Trion World Networks, a company promising to deliver new kinds of interactive online games, has raised a whopping $30 million in capital without having launched a single product.
The huge financing is a bold bet that an unproven company, formed early last year, can nevertheless exploit a “disruptive cycle” in the media and entertainment world to produce new online games of value. Nate Redmond, a partner Rustic Canyon, the company’s lead investor said the company will distribute “dynamic games” across multiple devices.
Here’s the statement.
Lars Buttler, a former Electronic Arts executive, co-founded the Redwood City, Calif. (Silicon Valley) company along with Jon Van Caneghem, a video game designer. We mentioned last year it had raised a first round of capital from Doll Capital Management and Trinity. The team hasn’t disclosed many specifics, other than they want to build the games and entertainment around “channels” of live programming — and that there will be elements of virtual worlds and social networking thrown in.
The $30 million comes from venture capitalists and media giants. Venture firm Rustic Canyon led the round, which included Time Warner, GE/NBC Universal’s Peacock Equity and German publishing giant Bertelsmann’s investment arm, BDMI Invest.
Live, original programming costs money, and there’s a multitude of other companies — new and old — already producing video and game content. Presumably, therefore, Trion will be drawing upon the content of the media giants among its investors, and seek to deliver their content in new, more dynamic ways. There are a scores of new game and media companies emerging to do similar things.