Connect2Media gets investment for US prize incentivised games push

CEO Hobson out, entrepreneur Nick Alexander in

Connect2Media gets investment for US prize incentivised games push
It's all change at the top table at UK mobile publisher Connect2Media following a new round of investment.

Its original primary funder Acuity Capital has been joined by YFM Private Equity in an undisclosed new injection of funds to enable the company to expand its North American operations.

In March 2010, Connect2Media purchased US prize-incentivised mobile games company Sennari.

It's now looking to extend Sennari's PrizePlay platform, a freemium token-based gaming network including features such as tournament-style gaming models, in-game prizes and friend-based referral programs.

"The US has a huge market potential for Connect2Media, with its line up of casual and branded mobile games titles," said Paul Gower, investment manager at YFM.

"The addition of PrizePlay makes its offer even stronger and makes it a very attractive investment proposition as a company capable of driving strong top and bottomline growth."

Out with the old

In conjunction with the investment however, current CEO and company founder Eric Hobson has left and isn't being replaced.

The reasons for his departure haven't been revealed, but presumably have something to do with the investment and what's looks like a change of business model for the company.

Nick Alexander, a serial games entrepreneur who set up Virgin Games and Sega Europe in the 1990s, more recently working with the likes of NaturalMotion and Player X, will step in as executive chairman.

"I am very pleased to be more involved with Connect2Media at this important time in the company's growth," said Alexander.

"My background and experience with Player X should provide a useful perspective as the company considers its next stage of growth in North America and the development of PrizePlay."

As one of the mobile games publisher to stick with the carrier business, rather than over expanding early into smartphone market, Connect2Media had created an interesting niche for itself.

It will be interesting to see how the new investment, and what appears to be change of tack in terms of focusing on PrizePlay rather than traditional paid for mobile gaming, will change the company's output in future months.
Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.