SEATTLE, Washington - February 7, 2007 - The Casual Games Special Interest Group (SIG) of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) today announced an initiative to facilitate the sharing of sales and revenue information among developers, publishers, aggregators and distributors of casual video games. Led by James Gwertzman, director of Business Development at PopCap Games®, the new Data Reporting Standards Initiative represents the first industry-wide effort to electronically share sales and revenue data among partners in the sector. Later phases of the initiative call for the aggregation and publishing of industry-level figures. In addition to PopCap, charter members of this new program include RealNetworks' Games division, Reflexive Entertainment, PlayFirst, Big Fish Games, and Oberon Media.
"At the moment, sharing data between partners is a very resource-intensive process, often involving manual entry of the same data more than once," noted Gwertzman. "It's absurd that we have been pushing paper reports back and forth considering how reliant we are on the Internet for all other aspects of our business. The fact that the major players in the casual games sector, many of which compete with one another, have come together to adopt a standardized electronic format is in itself noteworthy. Sharing this kind of information publicly, even in aggregate form, is a sensitive issue. However, our industry has matured to the point where we're ready to take this next step forward."
"We have already found the standardized data format to be effective in expediting the sharing of key information with our partners," said Erik Goossens, associate vice president of Games Operations at RealNetworks. "This is a great opportunity to help grow the casual games sector even more quickly and to further establish casual games as a major part of the overall video game industry."
The first phase of the new Data Sharing Initiative is a standardized electronic data format which, when adopted, will save each respective company (and its sales and distribution partners) time and money by reducing the need for manual data entry and related delays in delivering this data to their partners. At a later stage, aggregated data will make it possible for the first time to create accurate industry-wide "Top 100" sales charts measuring the growth and success of new titles in the casual games marketplace. Companies have already begun adapting the new report, with Reflexive Entertainment being the first company to send out reports in the new standardized format.
The program is open to all developers, publishers, aggregators, distributors and resellers in the casual games sector. More details of the initiative can be found at http://www.igda.org/casual. Interested casual games makers and publishers are also invited to join the Data-Sharing Initiative; sign-up instructions are provided on the website.
A list of companies who have pledged to support this initiative so far includes:
- Big Fish Games, Inc.
- Funkitron, Inc.
- iWin, Inc.
- Oberon Media, Inc.
- PlayFirst, Inc.
- PopCap Games, Inc.
- RealNetworks, Inc.
- Reflexive Entertainment, Inc.
- Sandlot Games, Inc.
About the International Game Developers Association (IGDA)
The International Game Developers Association is a non-profit membership organization that advocates globally on issues related to digital game creation. The IGDA's mission is to strengthen the international game development community and effect change to benefit that community. For more information on the IGDA, please visit www.igda.org or e-mail email@example.com.
PopCap Games is a registered trademark of PopCap Games, Inc.; RealNetworks and RealArcade are registered trademarks of RealNetworks, Inc. All other trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners, without intent to infringe.