Hoping to foster a symbiotic relationship between the video game, digital animation, visual effects, and digital film industries, game marketing and business development veteran Sean Kauppinen has founded a new consultancy firm, the International Digital Entertainment Agency.
IDEA plans to offer corporate strategy and communications services to companies, particularly those involved in multiple digital industries.
For more details on his plans, Gamasutra spoke with Kauppinen, a veteran of Sony Online Entertainment, Ubisoft, and most recently PR firm TriplePoint.
Kauppinen considers industries involving different digital media all part of the same larger umbrella, and hopes to bring them together. "The approach I'm taking is looking at the global market for things happening across games, animation, visual effects, and digital films, and looking at the size of that market," he explained.
"It's a total of $180 billion if you add up film with animation and games. There's a lot of opportunity out there, a lot of creativity coming out of places you ordinarily wouldn't see or wouldn't expect."
Part of what he hopes to offer is essentially familiarity with and knowledge of the landscape. "Many of these companies are headed by devs who have never really published their own properties, who don't have the business connections they could have," said Kauppinen.
"Also, it's being able to bring some perspective about what consumers in different markets are wanting," he went on. "A consumer in India is going to be looking at different kinds of localized content than somebody in China or North America. As we look into developing different content, it's not one size fits all. I think we all know this already, but how do we find out what people in different regions want? Part of that is getting in touch with local people in those markets."
Asked why he considers different digital entertainment media to be closely related, Kauppinen pointed to cross-pollination of personnel. "If you look at the people talented enough to make a digital film, they're also talented enough to make a digital game, or a digital animation," he responded.
"I think what we're going to find is the different disciplines in digital media are sharing people. As the different technologies hit PCs or consoles, and more and more game people get over to the film industry, I think you're going to see a lot of things take off."
"My goal has always been to help grow the game industry, and the more I see happening in animation and visual effects, the more I've wanted to help those industries grow too," he said in conclusion. "It's not about what we can do today, it's how we can help these industries so they can grow each other, and ultimately create more business for everyone who's out there working."
Kauppinen indicated he could not yet share the names of his early clients, but expects to "make some announcements in the next couple weeks."