As 2023 races by, something we’ve been eager to cover more of is the vast movement in jobs taking place at the moment. The mobile game industry is huge, growing and strong as usual, so there's a lot to keep track of. Whether that’s new board members, executives or key team members, knowing who’s going where and doing what is key to understanding the industry.
That’s where this series of – hopefully many - articles covering hires, moves and more that are taking place across mobile gaming. We’ll give a brief overview of who these people are, what they’re doing and why we’ve added them to this week’s recap. Starting off today with…
Robert Ng, veteran of NetEase, joins Sega Singapore
While Robert Ng may not be joining a top-level executive position, his appointment is still interesting because of his existing experience and the role he’s taking. Ng previously served as a member of the global publishing team, and also has relatively high-level experience as the COO of gravity Game Hub, developers of MMORPG Ragnarok Origin. His hiring as new general manager of mobile publishing indicates that Sega Singapore – in line with Sega’s further moves into the competitive gaming atmosphere in Asia – is gearing up to bring on people with existing experience in publishing and other roles.
Ben Crawford joins Flexion board of directors
Alternative app store publishing company Flexion has made some big moves and had big wins when bringing major titles to stores like the Samsung AppGallery. Now they’re bringing on a new member of the board of directors in the form of former CEO of CentralNic Group PLC, Ben Crawford. Effective immediately as of July 6, he’ll be a non-executive director on the board. It’s a relatively typical appointment of a skilled and experienced veteran of the gaming industry to the role and indicative of Flexion’s growth.
Yat Siu joins Web3 taskforce in Hong Kong
Co-founder and chairman of Animoca Brands, Yat Siu, is well-known for his bullishness on Web3 and allied technologies. After the United States began cracking down on the tech, and its financial dealings, it was announced Animoca was divesting from the market and squarely focusing itself abroad, specifically in Asia. It seems this wasn’t just business either as Siu has joined a government taskforce of industry experts and other representatives touting the advantages of Web3 in Hong Kong. We’ll have to wait and see just what recommendations they make and whether or not the famously regulation-loving Chinese government will stick to the fundamentals of free exchange that characterise Web3.
Michail Katkoff leaves Savage Game Studio
Michail Katkoff is no stranger to the rough and tumble of the video game industry, especially as he’s co-founder of Deconstructor of Fun who are famously blunt about their appraisal of the state of gaming. So his leaving Savage Game Studio, a part of PlayStation’s nascent mobile division, may have some slightly worried about the state of this part of the Sony family. PlayStation’s presence on mobile has been in the works for a while but we’ve yet to see anything major come of it. Katkoff indicates the move is mainly for personal reasons, but it's sure to be a bit of a blow to lose their founder.
Katleen Evers joins Pingle Studio
Katleen Evers will be taking on the role of VP of publisher and developer regions in the EMEA (Europe, Middle-East and Africa) region. She previously served as director of developer relations at Genvid Technologies – amongst other roles – and her experience should help keep the working relationship between Pingle Studio and its partner developers running smoothly. Especially in as vast an area as EMEA which also encompasses the Middle-East and Africa, two vibrant and growing markets.
James Crabb joins Gamelight
Crabb is a mobile gaming veteran in the truest sense of the word. Having served with companies such as Outfit7, Huuuge Games, Kabam and Wargaming, he’s got the pedigree to back up the title. Now he’ll be joining marketing platform Gamelight – which has been heavily touting its AI technology – as director of business development. It serves to showcase the growth and expansion the company is seeking, perhaps helping to serve a growing number of companies who want to solidify and expand their existing portfolio rather than add new titles.
Kadri Harma returns to venture capital
Harma will be moving from their position as boss of gaming support platform Nine66 back to venture capital. The now former CEO of Nine66, Kadri Harma oversaw a great deal of business taking place with the company, especially when it comes to their work in Saudi Arabia. Mostly notably Nine66 helped establish the Riyadh chapter of the IGDA (International Game Developers Association) which was an important step in connecting Saudi Arabia to the wider gaming ecosystem. Now Harma is set to return to venture capital, work with Sisu Game Ventures and GoBeyond Capital. She worked in the industry before joining Nine66, so it’s a return to form and perhaps indicative of optimism about the VC business in gaming.
If you, or anybody you've worked with, have any mobile games industry job news they'd like to relay to the team then don't hesitate to reach out to us on editorial[at]steelmedianetwork.com. We look forward to hearing from you soon.