Changes are coming to the games industry. Our speakers and attendees are driving them. Meet us at the Summit for a day of world class networking and indispensable talks from gaming's leading creators.
Lina Chen is the Co-founder & CEO of Nix Hydra, the world’s only purveyor of eggcentric apps backed by both teenage girls and venture capitalists. The company has more than $5.6M in funding and made the hit virtual pet game Egg Baby, which has 10M downloads.
Lina manages company strategy, hiring, and ca$h money. She also serves in a range of roles that need filling including marketing, analytics and filling out forms for the government. She is also a major contributor of egg puns and wacky ideas.
Previously, Lina negotiated international mobile deals for Grooveshark, a streaming music startup, and worked at the William Morris Agency, one of the largest entertainment agencies in the world. Lina graduated from Yale and was definitely not in House Slytherin.
Her hobbies are not having hobbies cause “who has time forhobbies?” Lina grew up in South Africa, where she once rode an ostrich. Her favorite games include Sim City, Neopets, Scorched Earth, Orca Slap, and Burrito Bison.
Digital entrepreneur Chris DeWolfe is best known as co-founder and former CEO of MySpace from 2003 to 2009, the social network that redefined the concept of socializing around shared interests. Under DeWolfe’s leadership, MySpace grew exponentially. At launch in 2003, MySpace attracted an average of 300,000 new members daily, and when he left the company in 2009, it had more than 125 million monthly active users globally.
DeWolfe continues his entrepreneurial mission at SGN. As CEO, DeWolfe led the acquisitions and rollup of MindJolt, SGN, HallPass Media, and Mob Science, creating a leading independent multiplatform game developer and publisher. Responsible for more than 12 top 10 titles on the iTunes Store and three number one titles on the Amazon Appstore, SGN has 35 million monthly active users, 45 million mobile downloads and more than 80 million installs on Facebook.
DeWolfe has been featured on the cover of Fortune magazine twice, was named one of TIME’s 100 most influential people in the world (2007), and chosen by Barbara Walters as one of her 10 most fascinating people (2007). DeWolfe has a B.A. degree in Finance from the University of Washington and an MBA from the University of Southern California and was honored by the latter as Alumni Entrepreneur of the Year (2006). DeWolfe served on the board of directors of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Talenthouse. He lives in Los Angeles.
Tim Harris is co-founder and President of Industrial Toys. He’s been in and around games his entire life, starting with his unpublished and unofficial Xanth RPG as a child, through his early career on the Leo Burnett marketing team that launched Nintendo’s N64 and the Pokemon franchise. He founded Starcom IP and SMG Play, two of ad giant Publicis’ most successful digital divisions, and the creation of Seven Lights, makers of early F2P collectible wargame, The Continuum. He is currently Founder & President at Industrial Toys, a game studio focused on creating great mobile games for core gamers. Their first title, Midnight Star, is a reimagining of the sci-fi shooter for touch devices.
As President of Skybound Interactive, Dan draws on a detailed understanding of the industry gained from working closely with publishers, developers, investors and entertainment partners. He joined Foundation 9 Entertainment in 2006 when the company was purchased by a private equity firm, facilitating the acquisition of additional studios and closing over 50 major game development deals. Dan is currently leading Skybound’s efforts to expand their interactive portfolio based on their existing properties such as THE WALKING DEAD, INVINCIBLE, SUPER DINOSAUR, OUTCAST, BIRTHRIGHT, MANIFEST DESTINY, CLONE and many more.
James Pitaro is the president of Disney Interactive, the interactive entertainment segment of The Walt Disney Company. In his role, Mr. Pitaro is focused on delivering high-quality interactive entertainment experiences for Guests across all current and emerging digital media platforms. In this capacity, Mr. Pitaro leads Disney Interactive’s multi-platform games business and oversees the division’s suite of premium web and app experiences, which serve as the online and mobile gateways to Disney. Additionally, Mr. Pitaro is focused on ensuring that Disney Interactive serves as a center of digital excellence within The Walt Disney Company by providing value, services and expertise to the rest of the company.
Prior to joining Disney Interactive, Mr. Pitaro served as vice president of Yahoo! Media where he was responsible for guiding the strategic growth and continued development of Yahoo!’s media properties. Prior to that role, Mr. Pitaro was vice president and general manager of Yahoo! Sports where he was credited with leading the website to its position as the number one online sports destination. Previous to that role, Mr. Pitaro served as vice president and head of business affairs for Yahoo! Music, where he was instrumental in making it the web’s number one music site.
Before joining the Yahoo! team, Mr. Pitaro was vice president of business affairs for LAUNCH Media, Inc. and practiced law at several New York firms.
Mr. Pitaro holds a Bachelor of Science in economics from Cornell University and a Juris Doctor from St. John’s Law School.
Alexander Seropian is the co-founder and CEO of Industrial Toys, a studio focused on building mobile games for core gamers. Alex began his career in games in 1991 as the founder of Bungie Studios. Under his guidance, Bungie created some of the most celebrated game franchises in the industry, including Marathon, Myth, Oni, and the blockbuster Halo series. Building on the success of Bungie, he founded Wideload Games, an independent game developer that produced award-winning titles such as Stubbs the Zombie and Guilty Party. In 2009, Wideload was acquired by Disney Interactive Media Group, and Alex became Senior Vice President and General Manager of Core Video Games for The Walt Disney Company where he built interactive franchises with major brands such as Mickey Mouse, Pixar and Marvel.
Emmett Shear is founder and CEO of Twitch (WWW.TWITCH.TV), the world’s leading video platform and community for gamers. Mr. Shear is also co-founder of Justin.tv and a part-time partner at venture capital firm Y Combinator, where he advises fledgling startups on product and strategy. Mr. Shear graduated from Yale University in 2005 and in 2012 was included in Forbes Magazine on their 30 UNDER 30 LIST. Twitch launched in 2011, and in 2014 The Wall Street Journal cited the brand as having the 4th largest peak internet traffic in the U.S.
As head of business development for Halfbrick Studios, Tina is focused on taking Halfbrick’s iconic mobile hits and turning them into a household brand. She’s fueling Halfbrick’s growth with strategic partnerships across mobile platform partners, Hollywood movie studios, and big consumer brands.
Tina cut her teeth in games working closely with developers and publishers at Mochi Media before it was purchased by Shanda.
Early at OpenFeint, Tina closed partnerships with both major and indie game studios, and was instrumental in growing the developer community from 600 to 20,000, which was the major source of value in GREE’s $104M acquisition of OpenFeint in 2011.
Outside of games, Tina pursues her passion to make a positive difference in the world by lending a hand at various non-profits. To that end, she’s traveled to Vietnam as a translator on two wheelchair distribution trips, and spent the Fall/Winter of 2009 lending her business development and marketing expertise at Kiva.org, a microlending non-profit dedicated to alleviating poverty. While at Kiva, she co-authored a grant proposal that won a $1,000,000 grant.
Javier Ferreira is the Chief Operating Officer of Scopely and a longtime digital media executive with more than 10 years of experience in mobile & gaming. Prior to Scopely, Javier was the SVP of Games Publishing at Disney Interactive Games, where he oversaw a wide portfolio of digital properties across mobile, console and online, driving over $1B in revenue. Javier helped turn Disney into a world-class mobile publisher by achieving 14 #1 hits on the U.S. App Store charts, driving over 500MM downloads and by delivering high double digit year-over-year revenue growth.
Prior to Disney Interactive, Javier was the CEO of TF, one of the leading Spanish printing & art publishing groups, where he helped drive over $50MM in revenues and expanded the company’s international distribution. Before that, he was the VP of Publishing at Electronic Arts where he defined the company’s worldwide strategy, worldwide P&L and technology investments, and grew EU revenues exponentially over 3 years.
Javier received his B.S. in Economics from the University of Warwick and M.S. in Social Anthropology from the University of Oxford.
Bob oversees global business development for games on Google Play. His team works with mobile games developers worldwide to help them grow their businesses on Android, and works closely with product teams to influence development of key areas including payments, distribution, discovery and engagement. Prior to joining Google Play, Bob spent 4 years on Google’s New Business Development team, focused on launching new gaming platforms on Chrome and Google+, and new ad formats across mobile, web, and TV.
Kent Wakeford is Chief Operating Officer for Kabam, the leader in the western world for free-to-play core games. Kent joined Kabam full-time in February 2011 after serving as a company advisor since February 2009. He has been instrumental in shaping the company’s game portfolio, adding talented development teams, and navigating all legal areas for the company. Currently, he is responsible for the legal department, mergers and acquisitions, corporate strategy and governance, partnerships for third party game development, and licensed intellectual property. Kent has sourced and structured Kabam’s relationships with Warner Bros. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer for The Hobbit mobile and web games, and NBCUniversal for the Fast & Furious 6 mobile game. Kent facilitated Kabam’s acquisitions of Gravity Bear, Fearless Studios, WonderHill, Wild Shadow Studios, Balanced Worlds, and Exploding Barrel Games. In addition, he assisted in raising more than $100 million in capital investments for Kabam from venture and strategic investors including Google Ventures, SK Telecom, Pinnacle Ventures, Warner Bros., Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Canaan Partners, Intel Capital and Redpoint Ventures. Kent also played an integral role in Alibaba’s $120 million investment in Kabam, which increased the company’s valuation to more than $1 billion. Kent began his digital career at Netscape and spent more than five years at AOL as a Vice President, facilitating more than 250 partnerships across AOL web properties as well as Time Inc., Turner, and Warner Bros. Prior to joining Kabam, he was SVP at AddThis social sharing platform and co-founded the media valuation and ad verification company Integral Ad Science. Kent began his career as a corporate attorney at O’Melveny & Myers representing movie studios, record labels, and media companies.
Susan Cummings, Executive Producer and Founder at Tiny Rebel Games, has over 15 years of game industry publishing and development experience, adept in all facets of bringing a game to market on a diverse range of titles from big budget console franchises to smaller mobile free to play games. She was one of the key creators of 2K Games and 2K Sports and has been integral to the creation of some of the most successful console franchises of the last decade including Bioshock, Borderlands, X-Com, and the Grand Theft Auto series. She moved into mobile in 2013 forming Tiny Rebel Games as a micro publisher with her husband and long time collaborator Lee Cummings. Together they designed and published Doctor Who: Legacy for iOS, Android, Kindle, and Facebook with Seed Studio in Taiwan. The game, which is managed by a team of 8 people, and continues to deliver new content each week, has garnered critical acclaim and continues to push the boundaries of engagement with its fan community and has been played by over 1.25 million Doctor Who fans to date.
Dan Brody is VP for Business Development at Tencent. As part of the Interactive Entertainment Group which has overall responsibility for Tencent’s gaming initiatives, Dan serves as the interface with companies based in western markets. Dan’s division is responsible for bringing in the world’s best games to China’s largest group of gamers, as well as evaluating investment possibilities in Western markets. Previously, Dan served a variety of executive management roles with Spotify, Tudou, Google, Motorola, USITO, and several startups, as well as several years on the board of the American Chamber of Commerce in China. Dan has lived in China since graduating from Georgetown University SFS in 1996, and as a former interpreter is fluent in written and spoken Mandarin.
Chris Akhavan oversees Glu’s worldwide business operations including user acquisition, marketing, advertising monetization, strategic partnerships, business intelligence, and international expansion. Chris brings to Glu a strong background in mobile monetization, advertising, and business development. Prior to joining Glu, he served as Senior Vice President of Global Partnerships for Tapjoy where he was a key early member of the team that built a leading mobile advertising and monetization platform. Chris was instrumental in building and scaling Tapjoy’s commercial operations globally, including establishing offices in Japan and Korea. Before joining Tapjoy, Chris held positions at RockYou!, VideoEgg and Yahoo!. Chris holds a B.A. degree in Economics from the University of California at Santa Cruz.
Dan Fiden is Chief Strategy Officer (CSO) of Funplus. Dan first met the co-founders of FunPlus when he led an investment by Signia Venture Partners — an early stage venture fund he founded. Dan has held multiple interim CEO roles – of Wild Needle (sold to Zynga) and Playchemy (sold to Iddiction), was General Manager of Playfish San Francisco, and was director of game development at EA’s Pogo. He began his career in games as Creative Director at Jellyvision on the “You Don’t Know Jack” series. Dan serves on the board of the San Francisco Game Developers Conference. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Cinema and English from Denison University.
Chet Faliszek is a developer at Valve. He loves short bios.
All attendees, speakers, sponsors and volunteers at our conference are required to agree with the following code of conduct. Organisers will enforce this code throughout the event. We are expecting cooperation from all participants to help ensuring a safe environment for everybody.
tl;dr: Don’t be a Jerk
You have our contact details in the emails we've sent.
Our conference is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, or religion (or lack thereof). We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter and other online media. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference without a refund at the discretion of the conference organisers.
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