Fenix ​​Games raises 0 million for blockchain game publishing

Fenix ​​Games raises $150 million for blockchain game publishing

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Fenix ​​Games has raised $150 million to create a new kind of blockchain game publisher.

The idea is to create a publisher and platform company that plays a key role in bringing blockchain games to market. Fenix ​​​​Games plans to acquire, invest and publish both existing games and future blockchain games.

The investors include Phoenix Group and Cypher Capital. The new company suggests that blockchain games – which have had a Cambrian explosion of sorts over the last couple of years – are headed for a consolidation where big companies will emerge by acquiring or funding all strong startups. In other words, Fenix ​​​​Games hopes to be in a good position to roll up many companies together into a single strong company with a large portfolio – one that can survive the current downturn in blockchain games.

“You can think of us as a VC fund,” said Chris Ko, CEO and co-founder of Fenix ​​Games, in an interview with GamesBeat. “The market is similar to before [mobile gaming at the rise of free-to-play games] but it has not found Clash of Clans for blockchain games yet. We use the VC arm to fund the next generation of games. We’re actually going to start with a huge capital base to invest in these studios. We also want to use our balance to acquire a bunch of existing games on the Web2 site to build a portfolio. And that will be the right base for our portfolio.”

Chris Ko is the CEO of Fenix ​​Games.

Historically, the gaming sector has had participants that have provided a market or platform for both
players and game developers. In consoles, the platforms included Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. And on mobile, the platforms are Apple and Google.

In both of these cases, an entire market was created and it led to an ecosystem to allow the consumption of content. But for blockchain games, this market does not currently exist, Ko said. The company was started by a group of industry veterans from gaming, blockchain and financial markets.

“We plan to acquire, invest, publish and in selected cases operate games and studios,” Ko said. “We want a few hundred million to distribute to execute our strategy.”

The chains represent a potential platform similar to previous gaming cycles, but at this stage it does not appear to be focused on building the market for players, Ko said.

“We think this is temporary as the primary apps on chains are going to be games,” Ko said. “The infrastructure, tools and support just don’t exist. We think there’s an opportunity for the role of Publishing to elevate its role in the gaming ecosystem.”

Matt Nutt is the COO of Fenix ​​Games.

More experienced game developers are expanding into blockchain gaming, especially in the wake of Apple’s privacy push in mobile gaming. But Fenix ​​Games believes a very narrow set of games are being developed so far for blockchain platforms.

“We believe that there is a structural gap – We aim to fill this gap with a redefined publishing group that leverages some of the traditional publishing functions, but with a new feature,” said Ko. “Just as in mobile free-to-play games there was a mix of analytics and the product management function to launch, scale and operate live services, we believe blockchain games will see a similar ‘mix’ of functions.”

Fenix ​​​​games wants to combine the skills of its employees in game publishing and product management as well as the functions will be rooted in product management, but take disciplines and capabilities from financial services, mainly asset management.

The combination of these disciplines is what the company calls gaming market economies. In its simplest terms, it will create the market for a game or games to maximize potential players for a game. A key function of the game market economies will be to scale the community before game launch.

Antonio Hallack is co-founder, CIO and CTO of Fenix ​​Games.

Similar to the function of live operations that was created to sustain a game launch for years, Fenix ​​Games believes that game market economies will play an important role in the months and even years leading up to a game launch. This activity is necessary to fill the gap in what was previously filled by the platform owners.

“It’s a bit of a roll up, but it’s also investing,” Ko said.

Fenix ​​Games will focus on the combination of game market economies and live operations to provide publishing services to all game models – premium, free-to-play and blockchain games across all platforms.

“I see a big gap right now with different developers experimenting with game infrastructure, middleware and more. There’s no one really filling the publisher role and trying to figure out how to go to market successfully,” Ko said. “Having a publishing approach, we abstract ourselves from the technologies. We play against Switzerland when it comes to technology, and we reduce risk.”

In addition to raising its own funds, Fenix ​​Games will also have access to allies among investors with much more capital – in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Ko said Fenix ​​Games is a next-generation game publisher facilitating the transition of the next billion gamers to a blockchain-integrated future. While traditional Web2 games have mature distribution platforms and markets that bring billions of players and developers together, Web3 lacks the infrastructure, tools, and support to facilitate mass adoption.

As more and more quality developers embrace blockchain technology and design principles, Ko said the company sees an opportunity for the role of publishing to raise value in the design, go-to-market and operation of games.

“And that means we’re not bound by a single technology, we’re not tied to a single ecosystem,” Ko said.

Ko was previously senior vice president of corporate development for Mythical Games. He has almost 20 years of gaming experience, and he held general management positions at Electronic Arts and Kabam. Before that, he was a portfolio manager at Blackrock and an equity research analyst at JPMorgan.

Other co-founders of Fenix ​​Games include Rudy Koch, business manager and co-founder of Mythical Games. Koch has 15 years of experience in game development on the biggest names in the industry: Club Penguin, Call of Duty, Skylanders and World of Warcraft.

Rudy Koch is Head of Business Development at Fenix ​​Games.

Antonio Hallack is CIO/CTO and co-founder. Hallack previously worked as global head of electronic trading at Credit Suisse; head of prop trading, market making, CTO and other senior roles in IB (Citi, Merrill, Goldman, Salomon Smith Barney, Bridgewater, etc). He has been involved in prop trading, market maker and asset management in crypto markets since 2017.

Matt Nutt is the COO and co-founder of Fenix ​​Games. He was previously operations manager and game manager at Mythical Games. Before joining Mythical, he was vice president and general manager of EA Mobile. Previously, he oversaw studios at Glu Mobile, ran indie studio Cie Games (and sold to Glu for $100 million in 2014), and held leadership positions at Blizzard Entertainment and Square Enix, in business development roles.

“The four of us are stepping up to the company to expand the things we’ve done from our past lives into ‘blockchain game markets,'” Ko said.

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