Up until recently, Danish games investor Capnova would always invest in a single IP rather than a games studio as a whole. With last week’s 2.5 million DKK Gametools Learning investment, that has changed.
Gametools Learning develops learning-based board games used by large companies and educational institutions to create innovation and handle management challenges.
With the Capnova investment, however, the company is ready to build a digital game on top of their existing physical game, which has been used by more than 100 customers in Denmark since the company was founded in 2012.
“The digital extension that the team has conceptually developed is very interesting to us, as it provides an array of interesting opportunities that the physical board game does not provide. After a game session, the organizations will now be able to more effectively analyze where the organization stands today, and what it will take to develop it further.”, Capnova investment manager Allan Rasmussen says to NordicGameBits.
Capnova has invested in several successful Danish games such as Subway Surfers and Limbo, but today’s investment constitutes the first investment by Capnova in a studio as a whole rather than a single IP.
And according to Rasmussen, the majority of future Capnova investments in games will follow the same new strategy:
”We have recently made a general decision to – as so far as it is possible – invest in the game production company rather than isolating the investment to a single IP.”, he says.
The advantage of the old IP-based model was that it allowed founders to quickly get rid of the investor, and Capnova would in return get a quick return on investment, which could then be used to re-invest in other startups, Rasmussen explains.
At the same time, however, with the IP-based model, it was difficult for Capnova to control the investment, which is part of the reason the strategy has now changed:
“The disadvantage of investing in a single IP is that we may lose control of the investment if the production company gets into a mess because of other parallel activities. And we do not have the capacity to keep up with both the production company and the IP’s finances.”
“By instead investing in the production company, we gain much more control of the process.”, Rasmussen explains.
Although the Gametools investment is the first game company-based investment from Capnova, Rasmussen emphasizes that future companies seeking an investment from Capnova should expect to be offered a similar deal, as the investment company is moving away from the IP strategy.
“Investing in the production company with the purpose of achieving a long-lasting ownership, will ensure that the entrepreneurs have the same interest as we do in developing the company in the long run. The entrepreneurs will gladly appreciate this, and we, in turn, have the opportunity of achieving a larger return on investment than was possible with the IP-investment model.”, Rasmussen says, and concludes:
“The majority of the future game developers that we choose to invest in, can expect to be offered our new investment model.”