Tony Pearce is the CEO and Co-Founder of TeePee Games and gamesGRABR. Tony features on the Fresh Business Thinking Shift 100 GamingTech edition in association with KPMG Small Business Accounting. Tony spoke with us about entrepreneurship in the gaming industry.
Briefly tell us about your journey to entrepreneurship
I’ve been an entrepreneur for 20 years. I’m from the tech, games and social world and have always been interested in start ups and solving problems. I’ve started four companies and had three successful exits. Most recently I founded TeePee Games and developed a social network launching GamesGRABR. Described by BBC Click as ‘like Pinterest for gamers’ and named a top 25 UK company by Mashable it’s now expanding into other brand verticals such as wine-grabr, music-grabr and more.
Previously I was the CEO and Co-Founder of Player X and spearheaded the company from a two person start-up in 2004 and developed it into Europe's largest mobile games distributor. The company was named by Library House as the fourth fastest growing VC backed company in the UK before it was acquired by Spanish mobile content company ZED.
I also love networking and co-founded an executive networking event called the Centurions, which is aimed at the digital entertainment industry and takes place every two months in London along with events in New York, Istanbul, Berlin and Munich.
Can you tell us a bit about your company?
gamesGRABR is a community for gamers by gamers, a social platform where gamers play, share, discover and buy games. gamesGRABR is a fast growing social network for people that love games and it’s available on mobile, tablet and PC. gamesGRABR is a growing community where users can connect with other gamers with similar interests and get peer-to-peer recommendations. We provide gamers with a perfect platform to watch gaming videos, discover, collect and buy games they’ll love - all in one place. Developed in a contemporary ‘pinboard-style’ interface which not only acts as a massive online catalogue of all things gaming, it also empowers the user to curate their own games' collections and receive inspiration from others.
What's most rewarding about being an entrepreneur?
Develop and sell products and services you love. Oh and have fun along the way.
What do you think is the next big disruptor for the gaming industry?
In my view augmented Reality and virtual Reality will be the next big disruptor. Augmented Reality is forecast to hit $120 billion by 2020 (Digi-Capital) and games will be the biggest driver in AR.
If you had one piece of advice for an entrepreneur just starting up, what would it be?
Actually I have three. Always be inspired and learn from others’ mistakes. Gain an intimate understanding of the sector you plan to launch your business in and most importantly know your customer.
The Shift 100 is a series celebrating the breadth and depth of the tech sector. For more information on the rest of the Shift 100 GamingTech list visit here.