TagsmaspethRXR Realtywarehouses RXR’s Scott Rechler and a rendering of 55-15 Grand Avenue (Getty, RXR Realty)Queens was king when it came to the largest projects filed for New York City in May.Projects in the borough made up half of the 10 largest developments last month, including two of the top three spots. The biggest project was RXR Realty’s vertical warehouse in Maspeth, while the third largest project was a mixed-use development from Phipps Houses in Far Rockaway.A residential tower that is part of Greenland USA’s Pacific Park development in Brooklyn grabbed the No. 2 spot.Overall, every borough was represented on the list last month. Outside of Queen’s five spots, the Bronx had two and Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island each had one.The full list of May’s 10 biggest real estate projects is as follows:1. 55-15 Grand Avenue, QueensRXR Realty and LBA Logistic’s 736,867-square-foot warehouse in Maspeth was the largest project filed in New York last month. The property — which Amazon has been in talks to lease — will stand five stories and 74 feet tall. RXR and LBA bought the parcels at 54-15, 55-15 and 56-19 Grand Avenue in 2018 for $72 million.2. 698 Atlantic Avenue, BrooklynGreenland USA filed plans for this 587,200-square-foot building, which is part of its Pacific Park megaproject. The 41-story building will have 682 residential units with a small amount of space on the ground floor set aside for retail. It is located just east of the Barclays Center.3. 17-21 Redfern Avenue, QueensAffordable housing nonprofit Phipps is bringing a 12-story, 354-unit building to Far Rockaway. The 12-story structure is one of multiple buildings to crack May’s top 10 list from Phipps’ Rockaway Village complex, which will bring a total of eight buildings with 1,700 affordable housing units, community space and retail space to the neighborhood, according to YIMBY.4. 475 Bay Street, Staten IslandBFC Partners, the developer behind Staten Island’s Empire Outlets, is bringing a 12-story, 208,000-square-foot mixed-use project to the borough’s Stapleton Heights neighborhood. There will be 274 residential units across 198,000 square feet, along with 10,000 square feet of commercial space.5. 21-02 Mott Avenue, QueensThis Far Rockaway project is also part of Phipps’ Rockaway Village complex. It will span about 155,000 square feet across 15 stories, with 129 residential units and community space.6. 10 West 55th Street, ManhattanManhattan’s sole project on the list this month comes from Leonard Wilf, who is planning a roughly 153,000-square-foot mixed-use project in Midtown. The 24-story project, split between residential and commercial space, will have 96 apartments.7. 35-15 19th Avenue, QueensThis warehouse project in Astoria from Robert De Niro’s Wildflower Ltd. will span 144,000 square feet and stand four stories and 110 feet tall. The development is likely part of the company’s plans for a new film production facility in Astoria. Wildflower closed on a 5.25-acre waterfront parcel in the borough in February for about $71.6 million.8. 59-19 Maurice Avenue, QueensHome Depot filed plans for a new store in Maspeth spanning about 134,000 square feet. It will stand six stories and 64 feet tall. The ground floor will feature a loading berth, office space and warehouse space, while the second through sixth floors will be for warehouse space, according to PincusCo. Home Depot purchased the site from Coca-Cola in 2017 for $63 million.9. 581 Austin Place, The BronxSNL Storage filed plans for a roughly 110,000-square-foot storage facility in Longwood. The project will stand seven stories and 89 feet tall.10. 1940 Turnbull Avenue, The BronxMay’s list closes out with another Bronx project from Joshua Siegel, who is planning a roughly 101,000-square-foot residential development in Unionport. The project will stand 14 stories and 145 feet tall, and it will include 154 residential units. Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink Share via Shortlink
Share via Shortlink Phase 2 of New York City’s reopening is off to a slow start, as office landlords see occupancies of just 5 percent their normal levels. (Getty)Phase two of New York City’s reopening started Monday, with office workers allowed to return to their buildings, brokers allowed to resume in-person showings, and a limited reopening of retail and outdoor dining. But the city is still a far cry from its pre-lockdown self.Rudin Management Company reported that occupancy across its 14-building commercial portfolio was at just 5.2 percent of the normal level, based on initial data collected on Monday. Silverstein Properties is expecting similar figures.“A lot of it had to do with building tenants not feeling comfortable with public transportation,” Silverstein COO Dino Fusco told Politico, pointing to the experience of other global cities that reopened before New York.Real estate brokerages are also seeing limited enthusiasm for a quick return to the office.“I saw today firsthand that a huge majority of our agents aren’t willing to come into the office and I think that’s going to take a period of adjustment,” Douglas Elliman New York City CEO Steven James said.The slow return of office workers will have serious implications for the broader economy and small business that depend on their patronage. “We rely on office people, and if offices don’t come back, we’re done,” said the manager of Friendly Pizza.Although 3,192 restaurants have received approval to set up tables for outdoor dining, this represents barely one-ninth of the restaurants that were open before the pandemic.The reopening of the city has proven to be a complex process, with many interconnected factors to consider. “Most working parents can’t return to the office until kids can return safely to school, daycare, or summer camps,” former Friends of the BQX executive director Ya-Ting Liu tweeted Tuesday. “This will be a long summer followed by an unpredictable fall.” [Politico] — Kevin Sun Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink TagsCoronavirus
TagsHousing MarketHoward Lorber Share via Shortlink Lorber also sounded off on the city’s recovery from what he called a “temporary coma.” He didn’t buy reports of a permanent exodus from New York City, even as the Manhattan vacancy rate reached a 14-year high in July.Broadway will remain closed until next year and more than 300 restaurants have sued the state for $2 billion due to restrictions on indoor dining. Lorber, however, is still optimistic about New York City, and said there is “plenty of value” in New York City.New York City “hasn’t died,” he said. “I think New York is always going to be the place people want to be.”Outside of New York City, Lorber said those who seek second homes or permanent relocation continue to see opportunities. Elliman has done significantly more business in Aspen, where Lorber said prices are on the rise with limited inventory. South Florida has also seen substantial price increases, especially for single-family homes, while there has been less demand for condos.“It seems like people are gravitating toward single-family homes right now,” Lorber said. “It’s a combination of factors. But there’s plenty of good real estate for sale at reasonable prices surrounding New York City.”[CNBC] — Georgia Kromrei Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink The high-end market may be hurting in New York City, but for those who want to pay less for a home, there is still competition.On CNBC’s Squawk Box, Douglas Elliman chairman Howard Lorber said that it may take several years for New York City to recover — as many of its attractions remain closed — but his firm has still seen bidding wars for homes under $2 million.In August, most new contracts signed for condos in Manhattan were between $1 million and $4 million, according to a report from Elliman.Read moreManhattan vacancy hits new peakMalls to reopen, but what can shoppers expect?Got space? Manhattan office availability reaches 7-year high
Full Name* Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink Share via Shortlink Message* Editor’s note: This story was updated to include testimony from real estate trade groups. Costa Constantinides (Getty)UPDATED, Sept. 22,2020, 1:41 p.m.: When the city approved strict carbon emission caps last year, officials exempted properties with any rent-stabilized apartments.But the City Council is moving forward with a bill that would require certain rent-regulated apartment buildings to meet the standards laid out in Local Law 97, which calls for a 40 percent reduction in citywide emissions by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. Under the law, most properties larger than 25,000 square feet must limit emissions based on building type and size.A new bill, introduced in May and sponsored by Queens Democrat Costa Constantinides, would revise Local Law 97 to include buildings where up to 35 percent of units are rent-regulated. The Committee on Environmental Protection held a hearing on the measure Tuesday morning — an important step if it is to become law.Following the passage of Local Law 97, the Real Estate Board of New York criticized the measure for — among other reasons — excluding “more than 50 percent of New York’s built environment from its carbon emission limits.” REBNY pointed to the exemption of buildings with at least one rent-regulated unit, as well as public housing, houses of worship and city-owned properties.Essentially, the trade group saw the measure as shouldering some property owners with a burden that others were allowed to ignore.Separately, owners have warned that the pandemic could make Local Law 97 compliance much more difficult, as they grapple with drops in rent revenue.Michael Rothschild, vice president at property management firm AJ Clarke Real Estate, said Constantinides’ bill unfairly targets buildings with high percentages of market-rate apartments.“It is an odd metric to use,” he said. “They are not evaluating the age or size, but rather the type of lease.”REBNY estimates that more than 1,600 buildings would be affected by the measure. In prepared testimony, the group called on the City Council to “undertake a rigorous analysis of this proposed legislation as any expansion of local carbon reduction mandates must be reflective of buildings’ physical and financial realities, particularly now in a moment of economic downturn.”The Community Housing Improvement Program said that because the cost of retrofits can’t be passed along to renters, the City Council doesn’t care about the financial toll of Constantinides’ bill. “There are thousands of small- and medium-sized housing providers who are struggling under the current financial climate and cannot fathom how to begin to budget for such a project,” the group testified Tuesday.But Constantinides said the bill should not come as a surprise to anyone in the industry. When the state legislature changed the Major Capital Improvements program last year, it limited rent increases through the program to 2 percent and made it so that such increases could only be applied to properties where more than 35 percent of the apartments are rent-regulated.That change paved the way for the city to subject some rent-regulated properties to Local Law 97, as the new 35 percent threshold could be used to prevent landlords from passing the costs of meeting emission caps onto renters through MCIs.“Big Real Estate complained when we passed Local Law 97 that rent-regulated buildings weren’t included,” Council member Costa Constantinides said in a statement. “Now, as many landlords continue to collect rent from struggling New Yorkers through the pandemic, they say it cannot be done. Which is it?”Contact Kathryn Brenzel Email Address* TagsLocal Law 97
Share via Shortlink TagsCBREtaxes CBRE CEO Bob Sulentic; the firm has shifted its global HQ from LA to Dallas. (CBRE, Getty)CBRE’s decision to shift its global HQ from Los Angeles to Dallas wasn’t mentioned on the company’s third-quarter earnings call Thursday. But the move, which the Dallas Morning News first reported earlier that morning, didn’t go unnoticed.“It’s yet another sad day in the city of Los Angeles,” said Ryan Leaderman, a real estate attorney at Holland & Knight’s L.A. office.CBRE, the world’s largest real estate services firm, later confirmed the change.“It was always cool to think of them as an L.A. company since most of the biggest real estate companies were based in New York,” said Jay Luchs, an L.A. commercial broker with Newmark, who spent 12 years at CBRE. But Luchs said he didn’t think headquarter locations are significant for large companies. “As long as you have top agents who understand the market it doesn’t really matter,” he said.ADVERTISEMENTThe move comes as the pandemic continues to upend the office market, taking its toll on brokerages that have endured months of losses, with many forced to trim staff and cut budgets and salaries.While CBRE said it did not foresee any layoffs, relocations or changes at its Downtown 400 South Hope Street office — or any of its other California locations — the move comes at a difficult time for the struggling L.A. market.Office leases plunged 61 percent in third quarter compared to the same period in 2019. Meanwhile, a CBRE report earlier this month showed L.A. office vacancy had climbed to 15 percent in Q3, from 13.7 percent in the second quarter and 12.6 year-over-year. Across the city, office leasing hasn’t been this bad since the Great Recession, according to CBRE. Overall office occupancy fell by 2.7 million square feet, adding to a plunge of 1.9 million square feet in the second quarter.CBRE was the second largest publicly-traded real estate company headquartered in L.A. County. The top company remains Pasadena-based Alexandria Real Estate Equities, according to Los Angeles Business Journal’s ranking.A CBRE spokesperson said the switch “simply formalizes the way we have operated for many years.” CEO Robert Sulentic told the Dallas Morning News, “we are happy to be moving here, and we are going to give Dallas a lot of growth.” The company will maintain its 25 offices across California, in addition to the space it maintains on South Hope Street, which it leases. CBRE sold that 26-story, 700,000-square-foot building in 2016 for $330 million.Sulentic was formerly the head of Dallas-based Trammell Crow, which CBRE acquired in 2006. He has an office in the Texas city and splits his time between there and L.A. The company occupies 90,000 square feet at its Dallas office at 2100 McKinney Ave., Real Estate Daily News reported.CBRE posted $245 million in net income for the third quarter, a near 10-percent drop year-over-year. The firm, which has about 100,000 people in more than 530 offices worldwide, recently made layoffs and budget cuts to trim costs, The Real Deal reported earlier today.Industry pros said the symbolism of a top brokerage shifting its corporate headquarters out of L.A. was more significant than the move itself.Luchs said real estate companies will remain in New York because it is still “the center of the financial world.” Increasingly, he said, firms will fan out to less expensive cities in the Midwest or the South.Carl Muhlstein, a commercial broker at JLL, called CBRE’s decision “logical.” He said L.A.’s “taxes and housing prices are just really high.” Among them is a $1.27 tax on each $1,000 earned by locally-based businesses.California’s taxes on businesses and business executives far surpass what Texas imposes. The Golden State has a flat 8.85 percent corporate income tax rate, while the Lone Star State is one of six states with no corporate income tax.Texas is also one of six states with no personal income tax. California, meanwhile, has a graduated personal income tax with the highest earners paying 12.3 percent of their earnings to the state, on top of federal income taxes.Besides the taxes, there’s California housing. “There’s a much higher cost of housing for employees here,” said Eric Sussman, an adjunct professor of accounting at UCLA. “You can retain talent at lower wages in Dallas.”California could reach a point, Sussman said, where further corporate taxes could mean a “net loss of state revenue” due to the exodus.In the last decade, large firms like Toyota, Occidental Petroleum and Jacobs Engineering have all moved corporate headquarters from the L.A. area to Texas. Northrop Grumman and Nestle USA also shifted HQs from L.A. to Washington, D.C., and Virginia, respectively.“L.A. is devoid of headquarters,” Leaderman said. “Our taxes are high, and our services are not great. It’s becoming an issue.” Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink
GameStop holiday sales jump 11%Nintendo Switch and Xbox One X drive hardware sales up 38%; used game sales down 8% as customer spending shifts to new games, collectibles Brendan SinclairManaging EditorFriday 12th January 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleGameStopGameStop got what it wanted this holiday season. The company today reported results for the nine-week holiday period ended December 30, showing sales up 10.6% year-over-year to $2.77 billion.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games “We are pleased with our sales performance during the important holiday period, driven by strength in the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One X, and a solid increase in our collectibles business,” GameStop interim CEO Dan DeMatteo said. “Our results demonstrate our customers’ enthusiastic response to new products and our ability to execute on strategically targeted promotions.”The Switch and Xbox One X helped push new hardware sales up 38.3%, while new game sales rose 7.3% year-over-year, an increase attributed to Call of Duty: World War II and Switch titles. (Last year’s Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare under-performed expectations, and this was the Switch’s first holiday sales period.) The Switch was also cited as a major factor for accessory sales, which jumped 33.7% over last year’s holiday season. As for the company’s diversification into gaming adjacent businesses, the collectibles segment grew 19.4% to $211.3 million, largely accounted for by clothes and toys.However, not every part of GameStop’s business was booming. Used game sales were down 8.1% year-over-year “as customers shifted their spend to compelling new video game and collectibles products,” and the company’s technology brands division was down 18.6 percent due to limited supplies of the iPhone X and changes AT&T made to the way it compensates partner stores.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Publishing & Retail newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesGameStop opening new US east coast fulfillment centerNew 700,000 square-foot Pennsylvania facility opens later this year, intended to support ecommerce “transformation”By Brendan Sinclair 8 days agoGameStop CEO reportedly due to receive $179m windfallOutgoing chief benefits from GameStop stock surgeBy Marie Dealessandri 20 days agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
Six app store optimisation techniques to get your game noticed on mobileSpil Games’s Francisco Belloch shares tricks and shortcuts that speed the process of ensuring your smartphone title stands outFrancisco BellochThursday 19th July 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleSPIL GamesApp store optimisation is like sailing a great racing yacht. The fundamentals need to be right if you want to be in the competition at all: the icon, the description text, the screenshots, the video. But if you want to win? Well, then you need to be reading the sea and the breeze and making constant fractional adjustments to pick up every ounce of advantage. Here are some tricks and techniques that, we’ve learned from experience, work right now. But be warned. The winds are fickle in ASO and we can’t guarantee they’ll all work next week or next month.1. Keywords should be agileTalking of competitive sport, there are only 100 characters in an iOS keyword string. Some queries, like “simulation game”, are highly competitive and you cannot always expect to do well with them. A good alternative may be to go for more specific queries: medium- and long-tail keywords. We chose “surgery simulator” for our game Operate Now: Hospital, for example.But you can change the keyword string when needed, adapting it to circumstances. Apple’s algorithm takes install velocity into account. At times when you’re seeing increasing volumes for your game, you can afford to be more aggressive with your keywords and that will boost its position even more.The most predictable time that install velocity increases is when you’re investing more in paid user acquisition. So you need to sync up with your paid UA team. If they do a burst campaign or are increasing budgets you can be pretty sure install velocity will shoot up and you might, temporarily, be competitive with a short-tail term like “simulation game”. That should allow you to pick up a much bigger volume of search traffic and your game’s visibility will improve.When the paid UA burst ends, you need to reset your expectations with the keyword string as your install velocity is likely to drop back down.2. Spend a little – learn a lotApple’s Search Ads allows you to increase the visibility of your game in the App Store. Soon after a game goes live, using Search Ads can help tailor your overall approach to keywords. Once you start paid activity with ASA, you can see how profitable your keywords are with post-install data. This allows you to get a good idea of the quality of the users coming in for each keyword you use. You are effectively testing the power of different keywords.This information can then be used to tailor your organic keyword string. For example, those with the best ROI are also likely to be the best performers in organic search.3. Force keywords into your game URLUsually your URL package includes basic stuff like the name of the game and the publisher. For example, the package name for Operate Now: Hospital is com.spilgames.OperateNow2. We noticed that the URL could be taken into account for search ranking in Google Play.That said, there is nothing to stop you including keywords in the URL and that will give your search an additional edge. For example, we could use com.spilgames.operatenowsurgerygame and that would give us an edge for searches on “surgery game”.4. Test video poster framesA strong video is important for your app store page. Optimising the video poster frame can make a difference in page conversion, so testing is essential. It is likely that you will prioritise the icon, the short description and screenshots in your A/B test plan, but you shouldn’t forget the video poster frame. Changes in the structure, images or the call to action can result in significant gains.5. Bother the Italian guy in HRLocalisation is incredibly important to app store optimisation. People simply respond better when you communicate in their language and on their wavelength.The language part is relatively easy, but what’s tougher is tapping into the cultural differences between regions. There are quirks in the way we express ourselves (and how we respond to app store descriptions) that come from where we grew up.At Spil Games, we are lucky. Out of 180 staff, we have 28 nationalities. That means we can tap into the cultural differences simply by talking to different people over lunch in the company restaurant. We have French and Spanish natives on the ASO team and if we want to know how an American will react to something we plan, we go and talk to Scott, our PR guy, who was brought up near San Francisco.6. Optimise your optimisationIn a perfect world, you make everything perfect for your game. But in the real world you have to prioritise. The screenshots in the app store page are vital to engaging users and they are a good example of choosing where to put your efforts. The left-most screenshot has a much bigger impact than the right-most (as it involves scrolling, a lot of people won’t even look at the right-hand screen shot). So put your resources into getting the first two screenshots working perfectly. At some point, you’ll want to test and improve the rest, but you’ll see a smaller benefit so you should prioritise other things first.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Mobile newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesSpil Games sells mobile division to AzerionFounders remain owners of Spil’s web portals, will work in partnership with AzerionBy Matthew Handrahan A year agoSpil Games names Timm Geyer as new CEOMobile publisher elevates COO of two yearsBy Rebekah Valentine 2 years agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
War Child, Gfinity and Nordeus team up for charity FIFA 18 tournamentCelebrities and pro gamers on board to help raise money for children in countries torn by conflictPress ReleaseWednesday 15th August 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleGfinityNordeusPress Release: This August, War Child UK, the charity for children affected by war, supported by two industry leading companies; Gfinity, a global leader in esports based in London and seminal game developer, Nordeus partner for the launch of War Child Football Club to help raise money and awareness to support children in countries affected by conflict.War Child Football Club will kick off with a celebrity-supported ‘War Child FC FIFA Championship, powered by Gfinity’, which will see high profile War Child supporters from the worlds of sport, music and showbiz compete alongside pro FIFA gamers in co-op matches guaranteed to deliver goals, gaffes and entertainment. The event will take place on Thursday 16th August from 4pm (BST) from the Gfinity Esports Arena in London and will be live-streamed exclusively via Gfinity’s Twitch channel: https://www.twitch.tv/gfinitytvFans and viewers will be encouraged to get involved and donate during the live show, by text, through Twitch contributions, by purchasing the War Child FC kit and emblem in Top Eleven, or creating their own football fundraising event. The money raised will help War Child support war-affected children including through its new War Child Child FC programme which provides coaching, life-skills and psychosocial support to help children recover from the effects of conflict and eventually thrive.Leading game developer Nordeus are supporting the launch by including a special edition War Child FC football kit and emblem in the free to play mobile game Top Eleven. Players can purchase the in-game kit with 100% of NET proceeds going to charity. The kit will launch in-game alongside the War Child FC tournament on the 16th August. Nordeus will also be supporting War Child FC going forwardLeading esports expert Gfinity is supporting War Child UK by hosting the tournament in its purpose-built Gfinity arena in Fulham, and by inviting the very best pro FIFA players to participate in the event. Shaun White, Head of Communications at Gfinity, said: “It’s a privilege for Gfinity to partner with War Child UK on such an important initiative. Football is a fantastic way to provide support and War Child staff to gain the trust of children living in war-torn countries who encounter atrocities as part of their daily lives. Our hope is the FIFA 18 tournament and subsequent events go some way in helping to raise both awareness and money for this incredible initiative and we are proud to become part of War Child FC.”Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games Nick Scott, Head of Partnerships, War Child UK, said “War Child UK has a proud history of cutting-edge partnerships across music and gaming and we’re delighted to be announcing our launch into sports and football. We’re honoured to be partnering with both Gfinity and Nordeus on this exciting initiative, without the generosity of our partners we wouldn’t be able to support children whose lives have been torn apart by war.”Miloš Paunović, CSR Specialist at Nordeus, said “We’re delighted to be partnering with War Child UK for the announcement of the football club. As a company, our values are ingrained in giving back to the community and helping others become champions, so we’re proud to be able to have this opportunity for people to download the club’s shirts and emblem in Top Eleven, and hope it can help raise funds for this worthy cause.” The War Child FC FIFA Championship, powered by Gfinity on Thursday 16th August is live from 4pm (BST) from the Gfinity Esports Arena in London, and will be live-streamed exclusively on https://www.twitch.tv/gfinitytvCelebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Daily Update and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesGfinity is no longer for saleRevenue at the esports company was up 212% in the second half of 2020By Marie Dealessandri A month agoGfinity acquires Epicstream as it seeks growth amid financial troublesBut sales process is progressing as plannedBy James Batchelor 5 months agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
Animoca Brands acquires Pixowl for $4.9 millionMobile publisher adds multiple world-building and licensed titles to portfolio, including The Sandbox and Peanuts: Snoopy’s Town TaleRebekah ValentineSenior Staff WriterMonday 27th August 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleAnimoca BrandsAnimoca Brands announced today it has acquired mobile development studio Pixowl for $4.875 million in cash and shares.The deal and brings Pixowl’s various mobile titles into the publisher’s portfolio, including licensed titles such as Peanuts: Snoopy’s Town Tale, Garfield: Survival of the Fattest, and Goosebumps HorrorTown.That portfolio also includes The Sandbox, an aptly-named “sandbox” type game that allows users to create their own worlds using resources and the game’s physics laws. It has been download over 40 million times.Pixowl is currently working on a blockchain release of The Sandbox, which is planned to launch in 2019.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games “Our acquisition of Pixowl provides powerful strategic and operational synergies with Animoca Brands,” said Animoca co-founder and director Yat Siu. “Pixowl’s experienced developers will significantly increase our development capabilities. Its founders are highly respected game industry veterans who have developed multimillion dollar franchises. We believe the blockchain version of The Sandbox has incredible potential.”Pixowl shares our vision of blockchain gaming, NFT’s, and games as a platform. Like us, it has a number of world-renowned brand licenses, including Snoopy and Goosebumps. We look forward to utilizing the many opportunities for growth conferred by this acquisition.”Earlier this year, Animoca also acquired Finnish mobile developer Tribeflame.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Publishing & Retail newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesAnimoca Brands acquires Power Rangers developer nWayStudio behind mobile fighting game Legacy Wars purchased for $7.69 millionBy James Batchelor A year agoAtari acquires stake in Animoca Brands as part of blockchain game dealPartnership will see Animoca Brands develop blockchain version of RollerCoaster TycoonBy Haydn Taylor 2 years agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
Niantic launches $1m AR game contestPokémon Go developer encourages developers to “think outside the box”James BatchelorEditor-in-ChiefFriday 21st December 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleNianticNiantic has launched a new competition for developers to see what they can do with the firm’s augmented reality technology — and there’s a prize pool of more than $1m on offer.The Niantic Beyond Reality Developer Contest is open to all developers and requires them to use the studio’s Real World Platform to build new mobile games that “push the boundaries” of the tech.The company wants to see projects that explore three core pillars: exploration, exercise and real-world social interaction. Applications are now open, with details on how to apply on Niantic’s site. Teams must have at least five members, with experience in Unity and Java Server technology.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games The deadline for submissions is February 17, 2019, and finalists will get to work for a three-month period on a demo they can show off at Niantic’s HQ in San Francisco.There is also the suggestion that Niantic may assist with bringing these games to market, with mention that finalists will be brought to San Francisco to meet executives and “lay the groundwork for the work to come.”Niantic co-founder and CTO Phil Keslin said: “While our focus is on games, we’re encouraging applicants to think outside the box with their submissions. We can’t wait to see the creative applications that bridge the gap between gaming and other areas of recreation and entertainment.”Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Mobile newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesNiantic launches Black Developers Initiative, offers funding and mentorshipPokémon Go developer continues efforts to support underrepresented Black developers in creating new AR gamesBy James Batchelor 3 months agoNiantic acquires community gaming platform MayhemSan Francisco gaming start-up to bring more social gaming experience to Pokemon Go makerBy Rebekah Valentine 4 months agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.