TapNation may have only been founded in 2019, but the French start-up has achieved some significant milestones in just a few short years. Fast forward to the present, and TapNation has recently reached over a billion downloads across its games portfolio. This includes the likes of Ice Cream Inc, which itself has been downloaded over 230 million times.
We caught up with TapNation’s CEO Hervé Montoute to discuss the beginnings of the company, its latest milestones and AI's place in the company's roadmap for the future.
Pocketgamer.biz: Tell us about the beginnings of TapNation. What were the aims of the company starting out?
Hervé Montoute: TapNation started four years ago with four people as a mobile game publishing company, and it still is our main mission today. This means we help developers publish their games on the app stores while taking them to the top.
We were convinced from day one that success in mobile gaming comes from the combination of solid tech tools and great creativity.Hervé Montoute
We were convinced from day one that success in mobile gaming comes from the combination of solid tech tools and great creativity. On the one hand, we strongly focused on technology to automate processes, forecast revenue, and gather detailed and relevant analytics to make great and addictive games.
On the other hand, TapNation is a creative powerhouse developing our own in-house games in addition to supporting our partner studios on publishing, user acquisition and monetisation, but also with live ops, developers, game designers, artists, etc.
How do you reflect on the journey so far?
TapNation started as a small start-up with very little funding compared to other global games publishers, and we’re now an international company of several dozens of employees around the world, so one of our great prides is to have been self-funded since our inception.
We’ve also been proud and grateful to receive so many certifications over the years, like being recognised as an outstanding example of Expansion in 2022 by Google, being a finalist for Best Developer at the 2023 PGC Awards and also being featured in the prestigious French Tech 120 State support program. TapNation has also been featured in many esteemed rankings while even integrating the Mobilegamer.biz Top 20 of Worldwide Mobile Game Publishers.
How do you feel about the milestone of one billion downloads across your portfolio? What do you think made it possible?
Reaching one billion downloads today is hard to comprehend, especially when we think about the path that led us there! This success was made possible thanks to all the work of our great teams, but also the tools and processes we developed in-house to empower our employees.
TapNation is, first of all, a pool of very talented and passionate people. We have a strong company culture where our employees strive and grow within the gaming space. We are a truly international team with more than 13 nationalities represented - our market is global, and so is our team!
When you think about the future of gaming, you think about AI in gaming, user acquisition, asset production or storytelling.Hervé Montoute
What do you think about some of the major changes happening in the mobile market? What's your biggest challenge?
Reaching the one billion downloads milestone is a fantastic achievement in the industry, but that doesn’t make us forget that the market evolves very quickly.
Over the years, we have seen the market evolve in terms of privacy and types of games. We’ve seen the competition get stronger and smarter, but we’ve learned to adapt to these changes.
When you think about the future of gaming, you think about AI in gaming, user acquisition, asset production or storytelling. AI will revolutionise the way we attract and engage players and it will be a major and exciting revolution in our lives as game makers and game players, so it is with ambition that we approach it.
What about the thing you're most excited about in the mobile space?
As always, what we’re excited about is bringing the best possible games to as many people as possible, even on new screens, which is why we are studying the portability of our titles on new screens and distribution platforms.
What can you say about the company's future? What comes next?
- Continue to grow profitably
- Continue to entertain an increasing number of players
- Continue to develop our tech stack to facilitate the work of game developers
- Reach the next milestone of 5B downloads
- Get closer to companies that share our vision of gaming through external growth operations
- Developing fast and ship quickly.
- There are also more big secret news to come so stay tuned for these.