The new mobile unit is based in Meudon near Paris, France with regional headquarters for North America in Los Angeles and for Asia-Pacific in Singapore. It will operate under the leadership of Paul Maglione, reporting into Cindy Cook, Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer, VU Games.
"Mobile gaming continues to grow exponentially as broadband cellular networks roll out, consumer awareness increases, and handsets become more robust graphically," said Cindy Cook, Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer, VU Games. "We are therefore particularly pleased to enter this segment led by world-class management and development teams, with proven success in development and porting, a string of top-selling, premium-branded titles already in the catalog, and a very strong pipeline of innovative product in development."
In addition to three Crash Bandicoot titles, other top-selling VUG Mobile franchises in the market include two Spyro the Dragon titles, and two titles in the iconic Leisure Suit Larry series. Recent new additions to the VUG Mobile line-up are SWAT Force, based on the best-selling VUG PC franchise; and strategy title Empire Earth Mobile. VUG Mobile will be demonstrating several new games at upcoming industry events beginning with the Game Developers Conference ("GDC Mobile") on March 20-21, CTIA Wireless, April 5-7, Mobile Content World Asia, April 4-6, and the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) at the Los Angeles Convention Center May 10-12.
"VU Games has already shown significant success in its mobile game offerings in Europe and North America, and I am excited about the opportunity to build from this foundation and help grow VUG Mobile into a global mobile gaming market leader which will play a major role in this industry," stated Paul Maglione, President, VUG Mobile. "Our plan is to leverage our relationships within the Vivendi Universal family and harness our original IP catalog as well as seek fresh concepts from the wider development community to create the most entertaining games for mobile gamers worldwide."
VUG Mobile will build off its current base of popular games sold by 70 mobile network operators across 40 countries, including the hugely successful Crash Bandicoot franchise which has generated more than 1.5 million downloads to date. VUG Mobile's portfolio will leverage cross-marketing opportunities with current VU Games titles; exploit VUG's back catalogue of classic games; publishing culturally relevant titles for specific geographies; and source high-profile entertainment licenses and mainstream content appealing to a wide range of mobile gamers.
About Paul Maglione
Maglione brings over 20 years of media and entertainment experience to Vivendi Universal Games, covering print, television, the Internet and mobile media, and will lead Vivendi Universal Games' efforts in the mobile market worldwide. Prior to joining Vivendi Universal Games as President of Vivendi Universal Games Mobile ("VUG Mobile"), he served as Senior Vice President of Publishing and Marketing at I-Play. Prior to his appointment with I-Play, he held senior marketing positions with CNN, Turner Broadcasting, NBC Europe and in the consumer goods industry.
About VUG Mobile
VUG Mobile has current game offerings live across 70 operators in 40 countries. These titles include: Crash Nitro Kart, Crash TwinsanityTM, Crash Tag Team Racing, Spyro Ripto Quest, Spyro the Dragon, Leisure Suit Larry Magna Cum Laude, Leisure Suit Larry Sexy Pinball, Empire Earth and SWAT Force. The company is a subsidiary of Vivendi Universal Games. For further information, visit www.vugames.com.
About Vivendi Universal Games
Vivendi Universal Games (www.vugames.com) is a global developer, publisher and distributor of multi-platform interactive entertainment. The company is a leader in the subscription-based massively multi-player online (MMO) games category, holds leading positions in the PC, console and handheld games markets, and is an emerging player in mobile and wireless games. Its development studios and publishing labels include Blizzard Entertainment, Radical Entertainment, Sierra Entertainment, Massive EntertainmentTM, Swordfish Studios and High Moon Studios. VU Games' library of over 700 titles features owned intellectual properties including Warcraft, StarCraft, Diablo and World of Warcraft from Blizzard Entertainment; Crash Bandicoot, Spyro The Dragon, Empire Earth, Leisure Suit Larry, and Ground Control from Sierra Entertainment. VU Games also maintains strategic relationships with industry leading content partners, including Universal Music Group, NBC Universal, Twentieth Century Fox and Ludlum Entertainment.