You might think of Pokemon Go as a fun way to get outdoors, but did you know it’s making money in a ton of unexpected ways?
The most obvious way Pokemon Go is making money is in the in-app purchases department, allowing people to buy virtual items for real money. However, the developers are teaming up with some companies to create sponsored PokeStops/gyms, TechCrunch reported.
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But the game is actually making money for more than just its developers though.
Businesses are seeing the benefits
In a rather cool twist, stores and other businesses in close proximity to gyms and stops are seeing an increase in revenue.
The businesses are taking advantage of the so-called lure module in the game, an item that’s usually a premium purchase, to attract people to the area.
The module, which costs about R19 in real-world cash, is visible to everyone playing the game in the general vicinity, attracting rare Pokemon to the area. It makes for a rather interesting use of the mechanic, potentially drawing foot traffic to an area that’s otherwise neglected.
In fact, one New York pizzeria reported sales increase by 75% thanks to the modest investment.
Another interesting trend is for businesses to offer discounts to Pokemon Go players, as one US news website reported. In fact, a South Carolina beef jerky store was offering level-based discounts to players.
Popular review website Yelp has even taken to listing businesses/eateries with gyms and Poke Stops nearby, Wired reported.
The ‘pokeconomy’ for entrepreneurs is a thing
It’s not just existing businesses that are benefiting from the game though, as entrepreneurs are getting in on the action too.
A feature, that lets you hatch Pokemon after walking a set distance, has spawned Pokemon walkers of sorts. These people will take your phone and walk around for you, so your creatures can hatch, Kotaku reported.
The UK is also seeing a burgeoning pokeconomy of sorts, as one PokeTaxi business makes headlines.
The driver, Bahri Takyuz, charges up to $33 an hour to take up to four people all over London to catch Pokemon.
“There are a lot of PokeStops around central London. It’s absolutely rammed,” Takyuz told Quartz.
And yes, social media has even delivered photos of people selling power banks at populated stops/gyms.