Welcome to our new regular weekly article where we round-up the week's big movers and shakers in the mobile games industry.
We’ll also be linking to handy jobs-related articles and identifying the top job opportunities in the sector.
Check out last week's big movers and vacancies here.
Movers, shakers and job opportunities
Don’t forget you can check out our official jobs board for vacancies in the mobile games business. We’ve also published a list of companies currently hiring, which we update each month, available right here.
Wargaming’s Anil Das-Gupta heads to London start-up Playrmakr
Wargaming product owner for mobile competitive games Anil Das-Gupta has left the World of Tanks developer to join a new London start-up called Playrmakr as chief design officer.
The studio was set up by ex-Arsenal and Burnley football player Danny Karbassiyoon and football agent Adam Davis to develop sports games for mobile.
Das-Gupta, who has worked at the likes of NaturalMotion, Mind Candy and Gree, said the opportunity to work for the team was “an opportunity I couldn’t resist”.
“Playrmakr’s gaming concept and USP is unique: Connecting fans and superstars in a mobile-first gaming offering that is bitesize yet contains all the magic of the real thing,” he said in a LinkedIn post.
“Too often in the games industry, we get caught up in what's worked in the past without thinking about how to best utilise the technology and leverage the platforms of today's world.
“Today's athletes are more than just star players - they are superstar brands and media companies in their own right who need to find unique ways to engage their fanbases. The way fans consume information and enjoy sports has undergone a critical shift since the rise of the mobile phone, and I believe that providing an experience curated for today's world is a huge blue ocean in which gaming is a huge part of.
“With seven professional soccer and NBA players already as investors in Playmakr and considering the rolodex of our founders, I think we are perfectly setup to take advantage of the opportunity."
German developer InnoGames names new PR team
German browser and mobile studio InnoGames has named new PR team as it plans to increase its output of corporate stories.
In particular, it aims to promote employer branding and work with media that publish content of a more “technical and business focus”.
To that end, it’s hired Jan Kronenberger as senior public relations manager. He previously worked as a PR manager and consultant for start-ups and members of the German federal parliament, the Bundestag.
Ex-Faktor 3 communications consultant Dennis Schoubye meanwhile has been hired as senior PR manager for games and corporate.
They join junior PR manager Esther Haal, who has been at the company since June 2017 focusing on event management.
Current Innogames senior PR manager for corporate Sarah Sellner will continue to serve in the role. The developer noted it was looking for a trainee to operate on its social media channels.
CrossInstall promotes Anuj Kucheria to chief revenue officer
Programmatic interactive mobile ads outfit CrossInstall has promoted its VP of business development Anuj Kucheria to the role of chief revenue officer.
Kucheria will now lead the company’s business teams and oversee its revenue generation and its three main businesses: DSP performance, brand sales and creative partnerships.
BEfore joining CrossInstall, Kucheria was head of advertising sales for the Americas at Chartboost, and prior to that worked at Google, AdMob, and Causes.com.
“We’ve experienced massive growth within the last two years, and Anuj has been one of the core drivers of it,” said CrossInstall CEO Jeff Marshall.
“He has a keen sense of how to advance the various lines of business and execute a thorough revenue generation strategy. He delivers when it counts as a forward-thinking leader, and I am excited for his expanded role in the business.”
The mobile game job vacancies
Here we feature a select few job vacancies from our jobs board and around the industry, as well as companies recruiting significant numbers of staff.
Angry Birds developer Rovio is hiring across its studios in Espoo, Finland and London, UK. Roles include:
Flaregames, hot off announcing the first partner for its Flare Accelerator Developer Relations Manager, is on the hunt for a developer relations manager to build relationships with studios across the world.
Scotland-based developer Tag Games has an exciting opportunity open for a senior games designer to lead the creative vision across one or multiple mobile games.
UK racing games studio Hutch Games (which also has a Canada office) is looking for an art director, responsible for managing UI art and UI designers.
Big Bang Racing Traplight Games, which focuses on titles based around user-generated content, is after a game programmer.
London studio Space Ape Games, an expert in live operations and a company that has close ties to Supercell, has an open vacancy for a game developer.
This week’s big recruiters
Here we link to a selection of the current big recruiters in the mobile games space.
The co-founders of Sledgehammer Games, the studio behind Call of Duty: WWII (pictured) and Advanced Warfare, have departed to take on new positions at publisher Activision.
As reported by Kotaku, Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey have both moved to non-specified executive roles at Activision, with director of product development Aaron Halon taking on the top job at the Call of Duty developer.
The studio was founded back in 2009, coming on board to help out on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 by Activision following a fallout with Infinity Ward founders Jason West and Vince Zampella.
Sledgehammer made the leap from support studio to effectively leading the Call of Duty franchise with bold new steps in 2014's Advanced Warfare and WWII.
The head of Microsoft's games business has said that corporate diversity is absolutely essential to the market's future.
Speaking at DICE - as reported by GamesIndustry.biz - Phil Spencer spoke about the virtues of making companies more diverse, saying that he had learnt some hard lessons along the way. This included, but was not limited to, the Microsoft party at 2016's Game Developer Conference which featured podium dancers in school uniforms. This, Spencer says, was an "unequivocally wrong, unequivocally sexist and unequivocally intolerable".
The exec went on to talk about the future of the games market and how companies need to best position themselves to serve a growing number of consumers.
"One estimate has the number of gamers growing to more than two billion people worldwide in three years," he said.
"I think the question we need to ask is this: How do we transform our industry to prepare for this massive growth opportunity? We're going to see increasing opportunity, with increasing responsibility to make gaming for everyone."