Webkinz is a virtual world for kids owned by the maker of Ganz plush pets. Kids receive a secret code with their purchase of any Ganz real-world plush pet, which they use to create the same pet in the virtual Webkinz world. They can care for their pet, buy stuff for their pet and play games with other virtual pet owners.
The whole point of the world is provide kids with a safe, virtual place for them to raise and play with their virtual pets. Kids are required to care for their pets by feeding them and making sure that they stay healthy and happy. They can buy fun stuff with Kinzcash for their pets like TVs and couches by earning points in game play.
Webkinz allows parents to monitor and control their kids' access to the site. Parents can set daily time limits for gameplay and can restrict access to chat rooms etc.
The sites main revenue source comes from selling real world plush pets and trading cards that are integrated into the Webkinz virtual world. Ganz started selling Webkinz pets in 2005 and it has turned out to be brilliant business model.
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- 03/27/08 -techcrunch.com