Posted on Friday 22 June 2012 by Ulster Business

Webgogamingo

READY TO LAUNCH: Pictured in the Thompson Dry dock next to their offices in the Northern Ireland Science Park are gogamingo’s CTO Martin Scott, CEO Aaron Taylor and CFO Junior Nelson.

A Northern Ireland-based technology company has secured substantial investment to fund the launch of an innovative web platform that it believes could shake up the social gaming market.

Belfast-based gogamingo has successfully raised over £300,000 in seed funding from various sources including venture capital fund manager E-Synergy, Invest NI and private investors, giving it the resources to go live with its platform over the summer.

Unlike most other social gaming providers gogamingo allows gamers to compete for real, tangible prizes in the virtual world. By doing so it also helps developers and publishers to monetise their games by giving them a cut of sales made on the competitions it runs.

Founded by technology entrepreneur Aaron Taylor and software developer Martin Scott, gogamingo expects its proposition to appeal to the gaming industry across the world.

“Our ambitions are to take gogamingo global. We want to be the platform with the most players and the most winners,” said CEO Taylor

“This seed funding round will enable us to prove the business model, to launch the beta version and to test the scalability of our technology over the next six months. All this will allow us to raise a larger series A-round in the US in about nine months.”

According to the company, the platform will appeal to all the key constituents of the games market because it delivers real prizes to gamers from games they love playing, delivers real cash to games developers and distributors, and delivers real insights to brands about what players are interested in.

Martin Scott, CTO of gogamingo, stressed: “A key differentiator for gogamingo to social gaming rivals is that it allows gamers playing different games to compete in the same tournament for the same prize thanks to a unique score normalising algorithm we have developed in-house.”

At a time when 70% of game developers are struggling to break even, the platform will give games creators and distributors access to a recurring revenue stream through a share of score uploads.

Gogamingo is currently in discussions with content partners to link their games to the platform and will launch a beta version for developers in the next few weeks ahead of a full launch in August. A simple click-through button on the game will connect gamers to gogamingo’s tournaments and score boards at the end of a session.

“Everyone we have talked to in the games industry gets it,” added Taylor.

“It helps gamers get a tangible return on their time investment, it helps games companies obtain real and instant cash returns on the games they market and it helps brands get a quantifiable return in terms of visibility and social interactions with a segment they may not yet have figured out how to engage with.”

Over the past year the founders have bootstrapped the business and put their own money into gogamingo. However, Taylor also paid tribute to the team of high calibre advisors who have helped get the business to the point of launch.

“We are very lucky to have a great team of advisors behind us as well as investors who bring strengths and capability that will undoubtedly help us in our future growth,” he said.

“E-Synergy in particular helped us from a very early stage, introducing us to other tech innovators and investors in London and New York. Their support has been invaluable the whole way through.”

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