Kixeye gets $18 million in funding and Zynga co-founder
Social games developer hires Andrew Trader
Backyard Monsters developer Kixeye has secured $18 million in funds during its C series funding round.
The funding was led by Jafco Ventures, and Jafco's managing general partner Joe Horowitz will join the Kixeye board.
"We are thrilled to lead this round of financing,” said Horowitz.
"After carefully evaluating all the players in the social gaming space, Kixeye stood out as much more than a one hit wonder, they are a remarkable 'hits factory' with a roadmap to produce an amazing list of new titles."
"This combined with a highly sophisticated monetization model and a world class management team clearly positions the company to achieve tremendous, enduring value and to become a true leader in the gaming industry."
Kixeye also announced the appointment of Zynga co-founder Andrew Trader. Trader worked with Zynga from 2007 to 2010.
"I see a massive opportunity in front of Kixeye. The games they build are like nothing else in the gaming space today," said Trader.
“Kixeye has emerged as the leading innovator of social games for core gamers. Gamers want great games, not re-skinned versions of the same thing. I’m excited to be a part of this company, and I look forward to helping them continue their successful trajectory."
Kixeye has grown from three to 60 employees, and its Facebook titles have around 5 million monthly active users.
"Over the next year, we will be releasing one major title per quarter, starting with our upcoming RTS War Commander," CEO Will Harbin said.
"We are also looking to create games on the Facebook platform that no one has seen before, including dynamic MMORPG’s, racing games, and, hopefully, titles that really push the envelope."
Kixeye recently accused fellow developer Kabam of copying Backyard Monsters to create their title, EdgeWorld.