Double Fusion Gets $26 Million

Posted by jgaudiosi :: Advertising in Video Games

DoubleRight on the heals of its biggest in-game videogame advertising deal to date with 2K Games, Double Fusion has received $26 million in funding from Norwest Venture Partners. The investment group includes investors Accel Partners, Jerusalem Venture Partners, Time Warner, Hearst Corporation, IDG Ventures Pacific and Japan’s Sedona Capital. That gives the independent in-game ad company plenty of cash to go after other big deals in the burgeoning market place.

tMicrosoft snapped up Massive, the big competitor in the field, earlier this year. That leaves Double Fusion as the major independent player. That, in part, opened the door for the big 2K Games deal, which includes multiple sports games like "NHL 2K8," "MLB 2K8," and "NBA 2K8" and several original titles for 2007 and beyond. Double Fusion CEO Jon Epstein said the new funds will be allocated to key areas of business, including media sales, technology and international operations.

In a time when DVRs are making commercials obsolete on TV, and also erasing the very concept of prime time viewing for millions of gamers ages 18 to 40; games are the one place advertisers can find eyeballs. Sports games, especially, keep eyeballs glued for hundreds and hundreds of hours. The advent of broadband-connected next gen game systems also opens up new opportunities for Double Fusion, which previously had to focus on PC games.

Microsoft is focusing Massive on Xbox 360, which leaves Double Fusion PlayStation Network and PC to tap into for now. Whether or not Nintendo's Wii gets involved in this remains to be seen. But as PS3 sells more units worldwide, the potential will grow exponentially over just the PC gamer. Console gamers are generally more mainstream than PC gamers.

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