Tag: rovio

Mobile gaming acquisition brings together two talented Finish firms

Next Games acquires Helsinki GameWorks.

Finland seems to be making a lot of mobile gaming news these days and the most recent is the creator behind the upcoming game The Walking Dead and other high-profile mobile games, Next Games, has recently acquired Helsinki GameWorks, a fellow Finish mobile games studio.

Next Games is excited about the deal as its new games will be launched soon.

The company’s CEO, Teemu Huuhtanen, said in a statement that he is very pleased to welcome employees from Helsinkin Game Works into their “family”. He added that “At Next Games we’ve focused on two key areas from the very beginning: building a robust portfolio and rock solid roadmap of games as well as ensuring we have an experienced team working on it. Joining forces is a logical move.”

The CEO of Helsinki GameWorks, Kalle Kaivola also stated that they are thrilled to be joining Next Games and said that being able to work with a talented team “on some of the most exciting IP in the world” is an opportunity that comes around once in a lifetime.

Kaivola has been appointed by Next Games as Head of Licensed Games and he will oversee the production of the upcoming game based on the popular AMC television series The Walking Dead. The game is called – The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land.

Helsinki is known for its mobile gaming talent.

Mobile Gaming DealThe capital and largest city of Finland is home to Angry Birds creator, Rovio and Supercell, the studio behind Clash of Clans. Both companies have obtained huge success with their popular mobile game hits. Next Games wants to join these companies and become the next developer with the hit title.

However, the firm has no plans to wait until the launch of its first big mobile game. Its new acquirement will see the firm make a new product roadmap and add an expert group of game developers to its team, bringing its total staff to 45 from 33. The company intends to create a diverse portfolio of internally and externally developed games

Founded in 2013 by veterans from Supercell, Rovio, and Disney, Next Games raised $6 million earlier in 2014 from investors that include Jari Ovaskainen, Lowercase Capital, and IDG Ventures. It hopes to make a huge hit in the mobile gaming sector, a market which is anticipated to grow to $20 billion or possibly higher by the end of this year.

Mobile game developer behind Angry Birds to slash jobs

Rovio Entertainment will be cutting up to 16 percent of staff due to lack of success.

The Finish video game developer and entertainment company that is well known for creating its smash mobile game hit, Angry Birds, will be eliminating up to 130 jobs at its home base in Espoo, Finland, located near the country’s capital Helsinki, due to a drop in profits, according to a statement made in a recent blog post by the company’s CEO Mikael Hed.

Rovio has approximately 800 employees worldwide.

The company boosted its staff and developed new games, such as Plunder Pirates and Amazing Alex after the success of Angry Birds, but its newer titles failed to be as popular. As a result, sales growth slowed and profits dropped as rival mobile games like Candy Crush Saga and Clash of Clans earned huge mobile gaming success.

In his post, the CEO said that “We have been building our team on assumptions of faster growth than have materialized.”

Back in 2010, the Angry Birds mobile game was the top-earning app in Apple’s US store.

Mobile Game - Angry Birds LandAside from being the best-earning app, the game’s many versions have totaled over 2 billon downloads. Rovio’s revenue doubled in 2012, but since then it has slowed as its new titles have been unable to climb to the top of the charts.

Rovio had wanted to avoid Zynga’s fate of relying too heavily on its game FarmVille for a great deal of its revenue, by expanding beyond its Angry Birds video game franchise. It also attempted to seek the success of Candy Crush and Clash of Clans by imitating certain features of these games, such as by including in-app purchasing. The in-game purchases of these two free-to-play games encourage gamers to continue spending a small amount to accelerate their game progress, instead of a one-time payment, which was the case with the majority of the Angry Birds iterations.

The mobile game industry is believed to be a future source of growth for Finland’s economy, but Rovio’s job cuts may have dampened this hope. In August, the company announced that at the end of the year, Mikael Hed will be joining the company’s board of directors and Rovio’s current chief commercial officer will be assuming Hed’s position.