GamesBeat 2017 will take place at San Francisco’s beautiful Fort Mason on October 5-6, and we’re delighted to announce our next four speakers. This group can teach us a lot about creating hits in the ultra-competitive $46 billion mobile game business.
Mike Vorhaus of Magid Advisers will interview Nick Earl, CEO of Glu Mobile, in a fireside chat. And Michael Metzger of Houlihan Lokey will interview Aaron Loeb, president of studios of Fox’s new game business, FoxNext Games. Vorhaus and Metzger are veteran moderators from our past GamesBeat events.
If you’d like to go, you can save 20 percent on registration with our Save20 discount code. These leaders have been around for a while, and they fit nicely with our retro theme, which enables us to extract the lessons of the past for the game leaders of today.
Since November 2016, Earl has served as Glu’s CEO. Before that, he was president of global studios, where he oversaw all of the domestic and international studio functions for the company. A twenty-year game industry veteran, Earl joined Glu from Kabam and Electronic Arts. At Kabam, Earl was president of worldwide studios, presiding over hits such as Marvel Contest of Champions. At EA, Earl was senior vice president of EA Mobile, overseeing freemium hits such as The Simpsons: Tapped Out, The Sims FreePlay, and Real Racing 3. He also led the company’s transition from the premium to freemium model. Prior to EA Mobile, Earl was senior vice president of EA Games launching such console and PC franchises as Knockout Kings, James Bond, Tiger Woods PGA Tour, The Godfather, The Sims, The Simpsons, Lord of the Rings, and Dead Space.
Aaron Loeb, president of studios for FoxNext Games, is a video game executive and playwright. His career in games began as a producer of websites in the early days of the Internet, when he was the founding Editor-in-Chief of the UGO network. He also ran Next Generation Online, Daily Radar, and created the Best of E3 Awards with Geoff Keighley. In 2000, Loeb shifted to making games when he joined Planet Moon Studios. There he produced a dozen games including Smarty Pants, Armed & Dangerous, and Disney’s Tangled. As CEO of Planet Moon, he led the company’s sale to Big Point in 2010.
In 2011, he joined Electronic Arts’ Playfish division. He went on to be general manager of the company’s wildly successful title, The Simpsons: Tapped Out, where he oversaw the title’s launch and growth to becoming the fifth largest mobile title in the world. In 2014, he joined Kabam, first as head of North American studios and eventually as co-president of Studios. At Kabam, he oversaw a company transformation, launching multiple Apple and Google Editors’ Choice games, including the international mega-hit, Marvel: Contest of Champions. In 2016, Aaron was part of the executive team that led the sale of Kabam to Netmarble, the formation of Aftershock, and the sale of Aftershock to 21st Century Fox’s FoxNext division in 2017.
Loeb is also a professional playwright, whose plays are performed around the country. His full-length plays include Ideation (which premiered Off-Broadway in 2016), First Person Shooter, and Abraham Lincoln’s Big, Gay Dance Party, which premiered Off-Broadway in 2010.
Mike Vorhaus is president of Magid Advisors. After 15 years of work in university transfer of technology (Caltech) and fundraising (he ran UC Berkeley’s capital campaign and ran the fundraising effort at UC Santa Barbara), Vorhaus joined Magid to build a consulting and research practice in the Internet, new media and digital entertainment spaces, including gaming on all platforms. Previously, he worked in the Carter and Clinton White Houses and on Capitol Hill.
Magid started working with AOL in 1995 and he has done over 3,000 engagements for the top Internet companies, as well as many large traditional media companies moving into new media, and many of the top console, PC and gaming companies. Magid Advisors provides investment, acquisition and strategic advice to operating companies, investment funds, private equity firms, and venture capital firms. Magid has conducted a large number of due diligence engagements regarding billions of dollars of media acquisitions in the last few years.
Vorhaus also invests in startups. His first investment was Digene, which sold to Qiagen NV. Another notable investment was Widevine, which sold to Google. He also invested in Wired Logic, which sold to Dealer Track.
He is also a member of the Screen Actors Guild and appeared in 2009 in Imagine That starring Eddie Murphy and Thomas Hayden Church.
Michael Metzger is a senior vice president at Houlihan Lokey and provides M&A/financing services to media and tech companies. Previously, he was a principal at Mesa Global, co-founder/principal at Covert & Co., and a vice president at New Century Capital Partners. He advised Yahoo’s Mobile Marketing and Advertising group and held positions at AT&T, IBM, and Mindspeed.
They will speak to our theme of the Time Machine. If you could see the future of games before it happens, that would give your business a competitive advantage. It’s like having a time machine where you can see the future and return to the present. You could also go back to the past to the retro days of gaming to get the lessons that matter. This is the idea driving the theme for our GamesBeat 2017 conference.
We don’t know exactly what’s going to happen in games, and that’s what makes it fun and unpredictable. But we’ll make sure that we get the most interesting leaders of the industry to speak. And we won’t just talk about old times. Rather, we’ll pair the speakers from the past with the leaders of today so they can talk about the relevant strategies for the future.
We’ll touch on the parts of gaming that are driving excitement, growth, and new startups. That includes augmented reality, virtual reality, esports, influencers, mobile games, core games, indies, new game technologies, and the connection between games, tech, and science fiction. We want to show you the edge and the strategies that will succeed in the future.
The past can be prologue. But games have changed as they’ve reached a billion people and $100 billion in yearly revenues, reaching the mainstream like they never have before. Can we still apply the lessons from the past to the current and future marketplace? And what type of innovations and companies will draw the blueprint of what’s to come? So much of the industry’s internal narrative has been about it being cutting-edge. How can we imagine a broader set of drivers other than technology that will shape the industry?
GamesBeat 2017 is the destination conference for networking, inspiring talks, intelligent interaction, and getting all the right people in the room to make great deals happen. It targets game and tech industry CEOs, executives, marketers, investors, venture capitalists, and developers.
Our previously announced speakers include Robyn and Rand Miller, co-creators of Myst and Riven; Ed Fries, former head of Microsft Game Studios; Josh Yguado, president and chief operating officer of Jam City; Chris Heatherly, head of NBCUniversal’s new game business; Debbie Bestwick, CEO of Team17; Perrin Kaplan, principal at Zebra Partners; Stephanie Chan, writer at GamesBeat; Tim Chang, managing director at Mayfield Fund; Ramez Naam, science fiction author and writer of the Nexus series; Herman Narula, CEO of Improbable; Bill Roper, chief creative officer at Improbable; Paul Bettner, CEO of Playful, the creator of the VR titles Lucky’s Tale and Steven Roberts, chairman of ESL, the biggest independent esports tournament company; Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO of CCP Games, creator of Eve Online and VR games such as Eve Valkyrie; and Bernie Stolar, CEO of The Stolar Group and former head at Sony’s U.S. PlayStation business and Sega of America.
- Nicole Lazzaro, CEO of XEO Design
- Nick Beliaeff, senior vice president at Spin Master
- Noah Falstein, chief game designer at Google
- James Zhang, CEO of Concept Art House
- Joost van Dreunen, CEO of SuperData Research
- Nathan Stewart, Dungeons & Dragons senior director, Wizards of the Coast
- Peter Levin, president of Lionsgate Interactive
- Ravi Belwal, Facebook Games
- Jamil Moledina, Google Play
- Sunny Dhillon, partner at Signia Venture Partners
- Michael Metzger, senior vice president at Houlihan Lokey
- Mihir Shah, CEO of Immersv
- Zvi Greenstein, general manager at Nvidia
- Gordon Bellamy, visiting scholar at USC
- Tadgh Kelly, Vreal
- Kate Edwards, former executive director at IGDA
- Tom Sanocki, CEO of Limitless
- Phil Sanderson, managing director at IDG Ventures
- Walter Driver, CEO of Scopely
- David Pokress, senior vice president at AdColony
- Mike Vorhaus, president of Magid Advisors
Topics will include:
- Intersection of sci-fi, games and tech
- Platforms:Where to place your bets? AR, VR, & more
- Creating a culture of inspiration and creativity
- Emerging markets for games
- Monetization: How to acquire and retain users
- Esports and building the community
- Deals: Follow the money
- Diversity and the expanding ecosystem
- Early Access as a business model
- How mods can launch new game genres
- What game engine should you use?