Interviews

$11 million gives us several shots at a hit, says Grand Cru

Looking to launch hard with Supernauts

$11 million gives us several shots at a hit, says Grand Cru
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If there's one studio which demonstrates the value of patience, it's Finnish outfit Grand Cru.

It's been working on its debut game Supernauts for over two years.

Still, given that its ambition was to make a game that took the best bits from Habbo Hotel, LittleBig Planet and Minecraft, ensuring the product was as honed as it could was always going to take time.

But now the waiting is over.

And to clinch the developer's status as the one to watch, Grand Cru has just closed an $11 million funding round.

We caught up with CEO Markus Pasula to find out more.

Pocket Gamer: $11 million a big chunk of change for a game developer. What do you plan to use it for?

Markus Pasula: We are planning to use the money on future games and growing the team to be able to work on multiple games at the same time.

Do you worry that the more money you raise, the more pressure you're under to be successful in terms of generating the multiples of investment required for an exit that will please the investors?

We're not really worried about exit pressures. We are focused on building a team of great people and making games that are truly fun.

Even a single hit in this market would be very pleasing for the investors. And I'm very happy that we will have several shots for making that hit.

Aside from money, what do investors add to Grand Cru as a company and its longterm success?

We have been very selective with our investors, seeking for smart, connected people, who understand the nature of games business really well.

Idinvest has been with us since early on, and additional investment from Qualcomm Ventures and Nokia Growth Partners bring a lot of international reach for us.

When it comes to Supernauts, what are your plans in terms of soft launch strategy and how will you look to market the game?

Our main focus on marketing is making a game that people really want to show to their friends.

We believe that true word-of-mouth distribution is the most important method of advertising, and that is only possible for outstanding games.

On paid acquisition we believe strongly in video. Because Supernauts is such a visual game, we believe video is the best way to advertise it.

Thanks to Markus for his time.