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Secretive Kiip.me will offer a mobile gaming ad solution, but will it pay off?
In a continuation of my interview with Brian Wong, Wong explains that the key to Kiip's business model is how it will leverage the uniquely addictive quality of mobile gaming to keep people hooked and interacting with ads.
In 2010, the company raised $300K to help with product development and scaling, and while Wong wouldn't say whether the company plans to raise additional funds this year, he did note that, "With the funding environment right now, it would be a mistake not to figure out what options there are."
When we discussed ideal companies to partner with, Wong explained that there are already a number of companies in the game developing world that serve both publishing needs and in-game development. Ideally, said Wong, Kiip would partner with an in-game developer that already has the power to command a large audience, as well as the publishers themselves. "Those two bodies are very important for us to work with," he said.
We also talked a bit about what Wong took from his time with Digg, where he worked in business development. What kinds of influences--if any--has Digg cast on Kiip? Digg, said Wong, was a pioneer in the "social news" space, but even more interesting was the fact that Digg was the first to apply game mechanics in a minimal way to the space. "Who would've thought that it would be addictive to be digging and commenting and seeing numbers go up for sites and news that a mass group of people would be improving on. It opened my eyes to the way different aspects of different industries could work together in a really unique way," he said.
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Kiip lets premium brands provide rewards to casual mobile gamers for in-game achievements. Their platform is designed for in-game engagement via a universal game moment: the achievement moment. Catch the user while they are the most engaged, happy, and attentive. They're the first solution to help premium brands reach the exploding casual mobile gaming market using real estate in meaningful moments. Currently the network reaches just over 20 million smartphone players worldwide.
A bit more here: http://bit.ly/kiipwelcome