LPV9 pre-coverage: An interview with Michael Fergusson from Ayogo Games

Ayogo Games Logo

This is the third post in a series dedicated to covering the entries at Launch Party Vancouver 9. Today, I talk with Michael Fergusson of Ayogo Games.

KT: Give our readers a quick rundown of what Ayogo does.

MF: We develop social games for web (including Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc.) and mobile (including iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, etc.). Our speciality is understanding how game economies work to attract and engage players, and ultimately generate revenue. We develop our own game IP as well as partnering with rights holders of various types to help them to build new audiences and develop new sources of revenue.

KT: Your demo vid on LPV’s site was very unique and inspired. What does the video say about your company’s personality, and the internal culture? Do you let that show through in your final product?

MF: Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it – we sure had fun making it. 

We hope that it says that we love to have fun, that we have a great team-oriented culture as a company, that we’re smart, creative, and have a good sense of humour. We try to bring those things to every project we do, and every relationship we develop. 

KT: So what’s in store for your business after LPV9?

MF: This is going to be a huge year for us. We should have some big announcements over this summer and fall.

KT: Anything else Ayogo wants to tell our readers?

MF: We’re very proud of our blog, where we try to demystify the principles that drive social game design, and share our insights through well-written and carefully footnoted articles. I invite and encourage anyone interested in this area to give it a read.

We’re very pleased to be part of LPV9. Bootup Labs is one of the Good Things happening to the Vancouver startup community, and we’re very grateful to Danny and his team for the hard work he does on our behalf.

Oh, and vote for Ayogo!

FergussonKT: One last question. What are your thoughts on Vancouver’s ecosystem for startups? Do you believe there’s enough viable support?

MF: “Enough” can mean different things to different people, of course. If you’ve got a business model that will let you bootstrap, you already have a well-put-together team of founders, and you’re comfortable selling out early, then Vancouver’s a pretty good place to work from. If you’re a “new media” company that needs significant investment capital, need to bring in significant senior talent to make your startup work, or are fixated on building a >$50M company, you’re going to have challenges in Vancouver. I know this frustrates many of us in the entrepreneurial community.

It’s important to keep things in perspective, though: Vancouver is clearly the best city in the world to live in, so if we can continue to make progress on becoming the best city in the world to build a business in, we’re doing pretty good.