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Report: Ex-Atari Exec David Gardner Looks To Game Investments

Former Atari CEO David Gardner said at the Nordic Game conference in Sweden this week that he's looking to fund new game talent that aims to "accelerate the state of the industry."
David Gardner left his position as CEO of Atari last year, and more recently relinquished his seat on the company's board. But he's still involved in the games business, and now says he wants to help grow the industry through a venture capital firm. At the Nordic Game conference in Sweden this week, he said he has joined London Venture Partners and will start looking to potentially invest in forward-thinking game businesses. "My main objective has been to work with people that are doing great things that I like and doing things that are going to accelerate the state of the industry," he said in a GamesIndustry.biz article. "Because I want to be involved in moving the industry forward and being relevant in the industry. So as an investor I take that very different thought process," he said. "I'm not necessarily trying to make ten times what I put in. You evaluate your risk and then ask, 'will this work in a bigger picture?'" London Venture Partners' bare-bones website also has mention of David Lau-Kee, a former key figure of Burnout developer Criterion who is a non-executive chairman on the board of directors for engine provider Unity. Lau-Kee's involvement in London Venture Partners is unclear, but Gardner participated in the financing of a $5.5 million Unit investment last year. Gardner is also well-known in the industry for establishing the European branch of Electronic Arts in 1987 after joining the publisher in 1983. He stayed with EA until 2007. "There's no easy way for a start-up company to be successful competing against an established player," Gardner said. "You absolutely need to make a bet on where you think things are going to move and place your forward bets. When you do that you want people who are very passionate about what they are trying to achieve, that are obviously smart."

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