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Speaker Spotlight: Fingersoft's Ilpo Virtanen on the "creative madness" of the games industry

PGC Digital #5 kicks off on February 8th
Speaker Spotlight: Fingersoft's Ilpo Virtanen on the

Pocket Gamer Connects Digital is back for 2021, set to bring together some of the finest voices in the games industry and beyond.

PGC Digital #5 takes place on February 8th - 12th. To give you a taste of what to expect, we'll regularly be publishing interviews with the speakers at the show.

The conference spans across five days and will feature a broad selection of tracks, talks and speakers, as well as various fringe events and the return of our meeting system. For more details on PGC Digital and to book a ticket, head to the website.

Today's spotlight is on Ilpo Virtanen, data scientist at Finnish studio Fingersoft. Virtanen has 15 years of experience working in data and analytics and has spent just under two years at the company. He also has a PhD in Space Physics. Virtanen will be popping along to PGC Digital #5 to share his knowledge on analytics-driven ad monetisation.

Tell us a bit about your company?

Fingersoft is one of the most northern game studios in the world, chilling out just 170km south of the Arctic Circle in Oulu, Finland. We are best known for the mobile smash hits Hill Climb Racing and Hill Climb Racing 2, which have a combined total of over 1.5 billion installs.

What does your role entail?

I focus on game analytics supporting game development, ad & IAP monetisation, management and customer support.

Why did you want to work in the games industry?

The games industry is fresh, developing fast and still allows lots of “creative madness”. There is still a feeling that almost anything is possible, and we don’t know where we are in the future. Also, my academic education and research background is highly suitable for this position.

What advice would you give to anyone looking to get into it?

It very much depends on what you like to work on, we have people working on game development, art, marketing, human resources, analytics, management, customer service, etc. Our people come from various different backgrounds. In general, I feel that you must be open-minded and able to learn new things.

What are your thoughts on the industry in the last 12 months?

Over the past year, the most dramatic change was definitely Coronavirus, which forced us to rethink all the practicalities, but also revolutionised the daily life and routines of our customers. People are globally more attached to mobile devices, which makes them also more demanding. Gaming is now more important than ever before.

What major trends do you predict in the next 12 months?

We all know that the world is going to be different after the next 12 months, but nobody knows how it’s going to be. That unpredictable change is probably the most important factor in any business. In terms of analytics, I expect that both personalisation and privacy are getting more and more important. Together with data-driven technical solutions and decision making, this will open new possibilities for those who manage the change.

Which part of the Connects event are you most looking forward to and why?

Basically everything that involves analytics and data analysis, especially all the new insights. 

Want more?

The full conference schedule is now live on the website. In the meantime, you can also check out our other track rundowns and coverage of previous Pocket Gamer Connects conferences ahead of the event itself.

Register for Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #5 today!