Interview

#PGCLondon 2016 speaker Kabam’s Rob Simister predicts more winner-takes-all consolidation

#PGCLondon 2016 speaker Kabam’s Rob Simister predicts more winner-takes-all consolidation

Pocket Gamer Connects London will kick off the 2016 in style on 18-19 January.

Tickets are still available.

So to give you a hint at what you can expect, we're shining the spotlight onto our speakers to provide a deeper look at the personalities who will be taking the stage.

  • Rob Simister is Kabam's vice president of Business Development EMEA.

PocketGamer.biz: Tell us about your company's role in the mobile games industry.

Rob Simister: Kabam creates, develops, and publishes massively multi-player games that are available to a global audience on mobile devices via its own dedicated channel in the Apple App Store, Google Play, and the Amazon Appstore.

  • The company is valued at more than $1 billion and has been profitable since 2012. Kabam has created five titles that have grossed more than $100 million each in their life.
  • In 2014, Kabam had three titles rank in the Top 50 grossing apps on the App Store.
  • Kabam has more than 800 employees around the world, with corporate headquarters in San Francisco.
  • The company's investors include Alibaba, Canaan Partners, Google, MGM, Intel, Pinnacle Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Warner Bros. and others.

2015 was another hectic year for the industry, what were the highlights?

Major players in the industry continue to enjoy top positions in the app store ranks and it's harder than ever for new or lesser known apps to gain higher ranks on the merits of quality or user experience alone.

Marvel Contest of Champions is Kabam's fastest game to 0 million

Leveraging popular brands is therefore growing in importance and can be a big driver to success.

VR is likely to be the biggest noise this year and may even gain some traction.

Kabam is very successful in this regard with key brand partnerships such as those with Marvel Contest of Champions and Star Wars: Uprising games driving user engagement; I see this strategy gaining more importance across the industry, particularly as UA costs continue to increase.

PG Connects kicks off 2016, give us a prediction or two of what we can expect to see in the new year.

VR is likely to be the biggest "noise" this year and may even gain some traction with multiple offerings hitting commercial reality from Microsoft to Facebook; how mobile gaming will be an influencing factor/player in this tech track, is too early to say.

It is also likely that we will continue to see consolidation of developers at the top end of the industry into 2016, with maybe the top 10 ranking slots owned by two to three companies.

Ray has been an enthusiastic gamer since the age of 5 and has seen his work published all over the internet. He is a proud iPhone 4S owner and absolutely adores working for 148apps. He also plays a mean game of Jetpack Joyride.

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