Angry Birds makes investors flock to Finland

With the Angry Birds mobile game’s popularity and revenue flying high, more investors are turning to Finland to find the next trend.

“The market has really grown with the growth in mobile gaming,” said Sean Seton-Rogers, general partner at London-based Profounders Capital.

Mobile gaming generated revenue provides a much needed boost to the Finnish economy. With mobile company Nokia’s market shares falling significantly, a lot of people are left in need of a new job. The five million strong population are now benefitting from the new possibilities of employment.  

Angry Birds has experienced a 57 percent annual growth rate, according to Finnish chapter of the International Game Developers Association, making it one of the top app downloads.

Other Nordic game developers are now enjoying the attention of investors, including “Clash of Clans,” “Hay Day” and “Hill Climb Racing” –all boasting more than a million downloads on the Apple Inc. application store.

Rovio Entertainment Oy, the Angry Birds developer, made a profit of US$42 million by the end of last year. Supercell Oy and Grey Area Oy are also not far behind in success.

Seton-Rogers was part of the management team on the investing project of Finnish startup, mobile gaming cross-promotion network Applifier with capital of 30 million euros (US$39 million).

Accel Partners has also invested US$12m in Supercell, also connected with Rovio and Facebook previously.

Supercell got a US$12 million investment from Accel Partners last year, which also has a stake in Rovio and was an early backer of Facebook. Grey Area, maker of the location-based multiplayer game “Shadow Cities,” has raised money from investors including Index Ventures and London Venture Partners.

“Helsinki is the best city in the world to build games at the moment,” Ilkka Paananen, Chief Executive Officer at Supercell said. “People understand that it’s possible to become global from Finland – to have an example like Rovio is very inspiring and motivating.”

Finland’s government has decided to implement tax breaks for minority investments to support the growth of unlisted local companies.

Posted in: Mobile

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