The Warwickshire College and University Centre (WCUC) has awarded David Darling, CEO and founder of the British game developer and publisher Kwalee, with a Fellowship.
The ceremony took place in October 2022.
Growing games and hiring graduates
Darling co-founded Codemasters in 1986 with his brother Richard Darling, launching Micro Machines, Dizzy, Colin McRae Rally and more. Their interests in the company were sold back in 2007.
Kwalee, meanwhile, was founded in 2011 and has a games catalogue with more than 900 million installs. As a hypercasual publisher, Kwalee’s biggest games include Bake It and Draw It – the latter having more than 100 million downloads alone.
We at PG.biz included Kwalee in our Top 50 Mobile Game Makers this year for fostering new talent, its international growth and breathing new life into abandoned projects like Build Your Vehicle.
Darling is recognised as a founding father of 'Silicon Spa', and through Kwalee has previously hired graduates from the college’s series of games art and games design courses. Currently, Kwalee’s studios cover the UK, India, Portugal, and China and has paid out more than £1.5 million in profits to employees.
"It was a great surprise and I’m really proud to have been made a Fellow of WCUC. I’ll try and motivate the students and take a particular interest with those on the games art and games design courses. My daughter studied at the college and really enjoyed and benefited from their creative, practical, and hands-on approach.
"It’s great that people have the opportunity to learn about games now, that wasn’t really an option when I was a student back in the 1980s."
WCUC CEO Angela Joyce commented: "The title of Fellow is the highest accolade we can award as a college group and university centre. Fellowships are presented after great consideration, and we were delighted to recognise David Darling this year.
"His work has had a significant positive impact on the economy in Leamington and wider Warwickshire, and we are pleased to welcome David to our select group of Fellows."
Kwalee is currently running the VS Game Jam, ending 13 November 2022, with the top entrant set to receive at least $500,000.