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What are Spanish venture capitalists "playing at"?


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BY : Diego GutiérrezJune Wed, 2013

timthumbThe video games sector is known for generating a very significant volume of revenue both at present and in the future. Which companies have managed to attract investors? Which investors have been most active in Spain?

Hooptap

Hooptap is a mobile games and prizes application that offers companies a new advertising method that uses users' willingness to compete to promote a brand. Some important companies have already opted for it, such as Sony, 100 Montaditos, Belros, Amstel, Virgin Active, Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias or Maui Jim.

"In 2012 Hooptap closed a round of investment led by the accelerator Business Booster and accompanied by the Valencian Institute of Finance, some business angels and employees for a total amount of €500,000 for the 20% of the company," says Diego Gutierrez (ABRA INVEST) expert in SME growth and financing.

Placechallenge

It is a real-world geolocated gaming platform that requires only a GPS-equipped mobile phone and an Internet connection to use.
"This project stands out for being the only foreign project in this investment round of Mola.com, an accelerator specialised in internet based in Mallorca. The company has its origins in Poland and has been created by entrepreneurs Marcin Borecki and Jakub Kadziela who have achieved the only round considered seed in the sector in 2012," says Diego Gutiérrez.

Playspace

Their model consists of transferring traditional board games such as Parcheesi, Dominoes, Luno, La Oca, Bingo and Chinchón to the Tuenti and Facebook social networks with a freemium business model based on the purchase of coins and virtual items to be able to play each new game. They are currently followed by more than 40,000 followers on facebook. Their games already have more than three million users and they are already working on the development of the mobile version for IOS and Android.
PlaySpace was founded by Alfonso Villar and Enrique Dubois at the end of 2011. They raised a significant €1.5 million round in mid-2012 from Peoplefund and Faraday Venture Partners. "Mola has demonstrated an ability to raise investors to accompany its seed investments in second rounds, which is crucial to support its business model," says Diego Gutiérrez.

Social Point

The company's mainstay is the three social games - Social Empires, Social Wars and Dragon City - which account for 95% of the firm's revenues. In the background are the casual games - such as pool, ping-pong and motorbikes - which are supported by advertising revenues. Social Point's business model is freemium: it is based on the sale of virtual goods - from one dollar to one hundred dollars - which gives certain advantages to the user, says Andrés Bou, the firm's CEO.
In 2012 the company raised a new round of investment, the largest in the sector this year, led by the French fund Idinvest and accompanied by the already partner Nauta Capital and BBVA. "According to company figures, monthly users have grown from 15 million in 2012 to 37 million today. This is an example of solid growth accompanied by growth in turnover: from €3 million in 2011 to €13 million in 2012. The most interesting thing for the future is that with this round, it will focus its growth on the Asian market," says Diego Gutiérrez.

Tusjuegos.com

Tusjuegos is the first Spanish e-commerce portal for video games through legal downloads, and the company's goal is to reverse the current purchasing habits of video game consumers in Spain and Latin America to reach the US model and that of other countries such as the UK and Germany, where more video games are already purchased through legal downloads than in boxes through shops.

In 2012 it obtained a €420,000 financing round led by Venturecap (Gaesco group) and the promoter group ITNEt, Korner entertainment and Lunar investments.

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