Rovio Entertainment based in Finland and the creator of Angry Birds, the globally successful franchise is involved in creating, developing and publishing mobile games. In a recent development, Rovio pumped in $3 million in a venture capital fund managed by Play Ventures.
Founded in 2018 by video game entrepreneurs Harri Manninen and Henric Suuronen in Singapore, Play Ventures had an objective to raise $30 million invest this fund in 20 to 25 companies. So far, this fund has been invested in five video game firms including Rewords and Starform. With the backing of Rovio, it has reached its goal. Notably, the company has been receiving funds from private investors and gaming companies.
Play Ventures has different plans
In an interview with VentureBeat, one of the founders of Play Ventures Manninen stated that they like the idea of startups merging gaming with something else such as artificial intelligence or any other technology. This young venture capital firm is unlikely to invest in esports teams. It might invest in technologies aimed at promoting competitive gaming.
Rovio aims to increase sales
Rovio founded in 2003 by Mikael Hed, Niklas Hed, Kim Dikert and Jarno Väkeväinen is a games-first entertainment company and its games have been downloaded over 4.5 billion times as of now. The Angry Birds brand that debuted in 2009 helped the company rise to popularity across the world. Since then, it has moved in various entertainment and consumer products. Even its Angry Birds Movie was successful and its sequel is in the pipeline.
Back in February this year, Rovio stated that it is looking forward to increasing its sales with the help of its new game launches and the Angry Birds Movie sequel. After its IPO in late 2017, the shares of Rovio dropped by 50% in 2018. Notably, it witnessed a 55% growth in 2017.
Wants to reduce ownership in Hatch
Rovio’s spin-off company Hatch is building a Netflix-like streaming service aimed at mobile gamers. And, the Rovio owns almost 80% of this company. After the drop in shares, the company wants to reduce its ownership in Hatch and the latter started looking out for external funding and more partnerships to develop its service.
Last month, Hatch Entertainment and DOCOMO, the largest mobile operator in Japan joined hands to bring the streaming platform to TVs and mobiles in the country. Even UNESCO and Hatch teamed up to introduce better educational games to Hatch Kids, which is one of its services.
“Our investment in Play Ventures is according to our M&A and growth strategy and the fund offers a good seedbed for new game ideas and companies”, says Rovio’s CFO René Lindell. “We regard Henric’s and Harri’s know-how in the industry as excellent and we believe that our investment in the fund offers Rovio many interesting possibilities.”
“The goal of Play Ventures is to invest globally in the world’s most promising early stage gaming companies and we pursue excellent returns for our investors. We appreciate Rovio’s investment not only financially but also as an expression of trust, and we believe that Play Ventures also helps to cultivate the industry and create even better opportunities for early stage gaming companies”, says Harri Manninen of Play Ventures.
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