Angry Birds are everywhere!
For nearly two years, the casual game market has belonged to Angry Birds. The megahit app has been downloaded over 400 million times and boasts 30 million daily active users.
For Rovio, the developers behind the juggernaut, the success of Angry Birds has led to movie deals, increased funding and rumors of IPO plans.
Mashable interviewed Mikael Hed, CEO of Rovio, to talk about the success of Angry Birds, the state of developing for multiple platforms and Rovio’s future beyond defeating the pigs.
Q&A with Mikael Hed, CEO of Rovio
The success of Angry Birds is truly breathtaking. How has its success changed your approach to developing not only the game itself, but also running the company?
The company is much larger than it used to be. We currently have 160 people compared to 20 a year ago, and we’re expanding rapidly in publishing, licensing and animation. As the company has grown, running it has become more complicated. But we haven’t changed our basic focus: excellence in everything we do.
Angry Birds is now a franchise — it has toys, apparel, Halloween costumes, lunchboxes, a movie is in the works. What is the challenge of balancing these aspects with also continuing to focus on game development?
We don’t really see these aspects as competing. The expansion into franchising is a natural extension of people’s enthusiasm for Angry Birds. The game is still very close to the core of our brand, but we see Angry Birds already as a broader entertainment platform.
Are games still at the heart of Rovio’s mission, or have your ambitions as a company expanded because of success and opportunities?
Game development will continue to be an important part of the company, but for more than a year, we have actively driven the strategy of becoming an entertainment media company. Angry Birds is our biggest brand, but will definitely not remain our only one.