The Finnish corporation behind the overwhelmingly successful teen community site Habbo Hotel, Sulake, has reported a €4.8 million profit for the financial year 2008. The company also created record sales, up more than 20% in December, closing in at €50 million for the year 2008. Even though Sulake has made a nice profit, there is still plenty of downside to cover in the coming years to make up for all the loss it has accumulated over the years. This is the first year Sulake has reported a profit since its founding in 2000.
The good figures are from the ever-growing Habbo community. By year end Habbo had more than 121 million registered users and they also managed to create more traction to the service with returning users increasing more than 40%. Monthly visitor statistics are around 11.5 million unique visitors.
Timo Soininen, CEO of Sulake, praised Habbo’s freemium business model leveraged with advertising revenues in the current economic climate. The distribution of income between advertising and consumer revenues in not known, however in previous years Sulake has referred to the distribution of 30% from advertising and 70% from consumer sales.
Sulake’s other web properties such as IRC-Galleria, has also grown steadily over the year. It now holds more than 507 000 registered members (Finland only) whose average age is slightly over 20 years. It is by far the most successful social network in Finland in revenue. Visa Kopu, one of Sulake’s employees writing at Vierityspalkki.fi (in Finnish), is able to tell that Sulake will grow its business to new platforms and new segments with a totally new product that will be launched later on this year.