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GMIC SV Keynote: Kabam CEO Kevin Chou to Discuss New Multi-Billion Dollar IP

Kabam is dazzling the gaming world with its intense focus on core games for mobile platforms. After blasting their way into mobile earlier this year with titles such as Kingdoms of Camelot: Battle for the North and Arcane Empires, they are now planning their next steps, and Kevin will be discussing a new title based on a multi-billion dollar IP during his keynote later this week at GMIC SV.

We interviewed Kevin recently about his vision for his games and their reasons for focusing on mobile.

What was your vision when you first decided to create games?

To bring free-to-play core games to an audience with any Internet connected device – no need to pay hundreds of dollars for a console and $60 for a packaged game just to get started. Increasingly, internet connected devices these days mean mobile and tablet.

Mobile seems to have been a large success for Kabam. How do you foresee Kabam’s shift towards mobile going forward?

Mobile is becoming a bigger and more vital platform for gamers.  Kabam launched its first game in March 2012 – Kingdoms of Camelot: Battle for the North – and it has been a top grossing app on the iOS app store for the past five months. In August, Kabam launched Arcane Empires simultaneously on Android and iOS, and it’s already in the top 10 on Android.  Kabam is increasingly embracing a mobile centric world.

What do you think about Facebook? Will they be able to improve their monetization platform?

Facebook continues to be a good partner for Kabam.  I’m not in the position to discuss Facebook’s monetization platform but I will say no company is able to reach consumers worldwide more efficiently than Facebook.  Their focus on mobile aligns nicely with our view of the market.

Most of your games have targeted the hardcore gamer market. How do you think mobile devices can cater more to gamers and help to expand the game user base?

Mobile opens a whole new market for gamers. The beauty of free-to-play games on mobile is it gives people an opportunity to play core games on their time and their terms with no cost or obligations.  These folks may have avoided core games because of the prohibitive costs associated with consoles and packaged games.  With the launch of the iPhone 5 and the next generation of Android devices, console quality graphics and computing power is in the pocket of hundreds of millions of consumers.

What is your latest project?

Kabam is launching  a major new title based on a massive multi-billion dollar IP which we will discuss further in October.

When can we expect to hear about your next game?

Kabam has a robust pipeline.  Since July we’ve launched new games and there are more to come.

What has been your greatest achievement so far?

I am most proud of the caliber of people who have joined Kabam in the past two years – Kabam has more than 500 employees now – and how we have passionately built the company.  Revenue in 2011 was $100 million and it was 100 percent dependent on Facebook.  This year we will grow revenue by more than 50 percent, and more than three quarters of which is on mobile and the web.

Your greatest piece of advice for mobile game-designers?

Dare to create, innovate and remember what every 10 year old video game player knows: if you stand still you get smooshed.

What do you hope to accomplish at GMIC SV?

I’d like everyone to come away knowing how Kabam is revolutionizing the video games industry by improving how core games access and pay for their entertainment.  The most important outcome is that we’re partnering with a multitude of companies to bring highly engaged, lucrative audiences to our partners.  I’d love to meet potential new business partners here.

What is your favorite game of all time?


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