Gaming business gears up for growth with the support of CIOSIF
Falmouth based gaming studio Trueplayers has secured a £225,000 equity investment from the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Investment Fund (CIOSIF) as part of a £475,000 funding round led by appointed CIOSIF fund manager, The FSE Group.
The CIOSIF investment, along with match-funding from London-based Concept Ventures and a number of private investors, will be used to grow the team by creating 24 jobs over the next three years across the tech development and sales departments.
Trueplayers is targeting a specific portion of the gaming market with games designed for mobile devices played in portrait. These are aimed at users who are happy to play more casually rather than sitting down for a lengthy gaming session. To complement this, games will use colourful and quality artwork to draw people in and add to the ease and enjoyment of the experience.
The studio’s first release is UnderKnight, an adventure role-playing game which will be launched on Android and IOS next year. Further games are planned for development over the coming years and will re-use core technologies, in part to echo successful components of UnderKnight and to lower future development costs.
Trueplayers has a strong place in the gaming sector where there is a market gap for users who already game and want a little more out of their mobile experience, without being overwhelmed with complexity or a need to play for long periods.
Adrian Ruiz Langan, CEO and Lead Design, at Trueplayers, commented: “To create a fantastic gaming experience we take the core mechanics from hugely popular PC and console titles and create ‘mobile first’ titles which appeal to a broad casual audience. To enable us to achieve this we will establish a highly skilled and specialist team who can support and complement our existing skills to produce innovative new games. The funding that The FSE Group has helped us secure will be used to build this expert team and we cannot wait to get stuck in and start releasing titles next year.”
Ralph Singleton, Head of Funds Cornwall at The FSE Group, added: “Founders Adrian and Rob have a great deal of experience in industries including games marketing, programming and self-publishing mobile titles. Between the two of them several games they have produced hit over a million downloads and they have built profitable divisions within existing larger companies. Trueplayers is already gathering significant support in the sector and the pair have the niche skills and business sense to grow the company into a highly successful gaming studio. UnderKnight has already received hugely positive feedback from early gamers and we look forward to celebrating the official release next summer.”
The £40m Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Investment Fund provides debt and equity finance from £25,000 to £2 million to help growing small businesses across the region. It has been established by the British Business Bank in partnership with the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).
Paul Jones, Senior Investment Manager at the British Business Bank, said: “The fund has leveraged significant investment into Trueplayers to help the company develop and launch its games portfolio, and create 24 quality jobs over the next few years. Gaming continues to drive demand for mobile content and the business is poised to benefit from that growth.”
John Acornley, LEP non-executive director and chair of the CIOSIF Advisory Board, said: “This is another major investment by the fund in Cornwall’s tech sector, and in particular the growing cluster of gaming expertise in and around Falmouth. The team at Trueplayers has a clear vision for the future and we wish them well.”
CIOSIF is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.