Accel backs mobile game developer Industrial Toys

Accel Partners, which is no stranger to the gaming sector, having backed Playfish, Rovio, Supercell and others, has announced it led a $5 million Series A investment in Industrial Toys. This is the first institutional round raised by the Pasadena, Calif.-based company, which is led by CEO Alex Seropian. Seropian is a former Disney game exec and co-founded and later served as president of Bungie Software Products Corp, developer of the Marathon, Myth, and Halo video game series.

PRESS RELEASE

Industrial Toys Raises $5M Series A Funding From Accel Partners

Founder of Bungie Studios Developing for the “Mobile Core” Gaming Experience

Industrial Toys, a next-generation mobile games developer, will announce on Tuesday a new $5m Series A round of funding led by Accel Partners, early investors in Rovio and Supercell. Industrial Toys is founded by Alex Seropian, founder of Bungie Studios (the team behind the hit Halo franchise). As part of the financing, the company is also announcing the launch of its first title, Midnight Star, into beta this summer.

Industrial Toys takes advantage of hardware and platform advancements behind mobile devices to deliver immersive, high-production value content for today’s core gamer.

Mobile games are the fastest-growing segment of the gaming market with revenue set to nearly double from $13.2 billion in 2013 to $22 billion in 2015, according to Gartner, Inc. The global games market is estimated at north of $60 billion, with core gamers being the most enthusiastic spenders.

The company had been angel-funded as it worked on its first title. The round represents its first institutional financing, and comes from a firm with long history in the games space. Accel Partners had been early investors in Supercell, Rovio (Angry Birds), Playfish, Gameforge, Mind Candy and many others.

Quotes from executives:
“Today’s tablets are just as good, if not better gaming platforms than the consoles we built games for in our past. However, there isn’t a ton of great content for people like us. We want to change that by building immersive games for the mobile and tablet-enabled core gamer,” said Alex Seropian, CEO Industrial Toys.

“Developing ‘core’ content for tablet isn’t about porting over something from the Xbox or Playstation. It’s about understanding touch and gesture-based controls and how users interact with their device. We want to build an experience that spans multiple engagement points throughout the day,” added Alex. “Since these devices are always with you, providing different levels of involvement, we’re designing our games to do the same.”

“Accel has been investing in gaming businesses for many years. As we’ve seen, each new platform shift yields a crop of large, independent gaming companies. The shift to mobile and tablets is no different, but has largely targeted the casual or mid-core gamer. The opportunity to ‘activate’ core gamers is even bigger — the content just hasn’t been there,” said Vas Natarajan of Accel Partners. “Alex and team are developing for the gamers who’ve largely been underserved in this push to mobile.”

“Real gamers want to compete, explore and become part of a community. We need a storyline we can sink our teeth into and quality that mirrors what we’d expect from a PC and the console – but with gameplay design specific to next-gen devices,” added Tim Harris, President of the company.

About Industrial Toys
Industrial Toys is an independent studio designing mobile games for core gamers. For more information on Industrial Toys, please visit industrialtoys.com, and to check out Midnight Star, go to midnightstargame.com.

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