Written by Ι Stock Market Media — February 28, 2017
SPYR, Inc.’s (OTCQB: SPYR) investors should be growing more and more confident with the company as it is becomes more clear that 2017 could be the year that SPYR takes a giant leap forward in its evolution in the games industry. With its latest hire, SPYR should earn more credibility among industry leaders. Farshid Almassizadeh, who has joined SPYR as its Chief Strategic Advisor, is a 25-year veteran of the computer, video, and mobile gaming industries, and a former senior executive at gaming giant Electronic Arts (EA).
Almassizadeh is well known across a number of industries and his world-class resume leads one to wonder what big plans SPYR has for 2017 and beyond. One thing is for sure with this hire, SPYR will benefit greatly from having Farshid Almassizadeh as part of its team. After all, Almassizadeh spent almost a decade as a top-level executive with one of the biggest names in gaming – Electronic Arts, so SPYR will now have all of that knowledge and expertise and his access to what can only be a “Who’s Who” of contacts in the computer, video and mobile gaming industries at its disposal.
While at Electronic Arts, Almassizadeh was the Vice President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) at EA Interactive, a $1.2 billion multi-national division of EA responsible for mobile, online, and social gaming. He also worked as the Senior Director of Product Development at EA where he was responsible for the development of such popular EA titles as “The Simpsons Game” series and “The Sims” series of games.
Commenting on the company’s new Chief Strategic Advisor, James R. Thompson, SPYR’s CEO and President, said, “Farshid brings SPYR the highest credibility we could possibly hope to have, a level that can only be achieved by a remarkable 25-year career in the games industry. Farshid is a games industry rock star and we could not be more proud to have him on board as our Chief Strategic Advisor.
“He is a true industry veteran having been there from its very early days. He is a developer and a publisher, and he has experience with all manner of games companies from start-ups to those among the industry’s largest.”
Interestingly, Almassizadeh is on the advisory board of a number of impressive companies in the entertainment industry including Halon Entertainment and Matter vr. One is a leading special effects company for some of Hollywood’s biggest films, television commercials, and games, and the other is a virtual reality company headed up by award winning leaders in film, television & gaming.
Halon Entertainment is a leading special effects company with credits in more than 80 Hollywood movies including; Kong: Skull Island, The Great Wall, Logan: The Wolverine, Deepwater Horizon, The Hunger Games, Star Wars, Life of Pi, Jurassic Park, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn 1 & 2, and Avatar. Halon has also worked on television commercials and content for such games as Halo 3, Halo: Reach, League of Legends – The Harrowing, Destiny, Mass Effect: New Earth, XCom2, The Division, and Evolve.
Meanwhile, Matter vr is a virtual reality content company that created the world’s first historical VR experience curated by the Smithsonian.
In early February, SPYR released a shareholder update where it discussed the company’s plans for 2017. SPYR said its overarching goal for this year and beyond is to become a premier, diversified mobile games publisher, deriving revenue from games in various genres and appealing to multiple demographics. We believe unquestionably that Farshid Almassizadeh can play an integral role in helping SPYR accomplish their overarching goal, but we also feel that he can play a major role in two other areas that the company highlighted in its update to shareholders:
1.) Publishing Additional Games
SPYR said it would continue to seek out new publishing agreements for new game titles in various stages of development. SPYR will be considering games in a diverse field of genres with the goal of creating a portfolio of games that appeal to multiple demographics, resulting in a regular and consistent revenue stream.
2.) Hollywood Intellectual Property
SPYR said it has been and will continue to search out Hollywood Intellectual Property (IP) to enhance the revenue and exposure of Pocket Starships and its other published titles.
Thompson said of SPYR’s path forward with Farshid Almassizadeh, “We expect Farshid’s advice and guidance to enable us to sign publishing deals that would otherwise be out of our reach as a relatively new player in the industry, as well as helping us more quickly find the needles in the haystack that you need to find in order to be a successful electronic games publisher.”
Needless to say, SPYR hit a grand slam with the hiring of Farshid Almassizadeh. Now the question remains – just how big a leap can SPYR make in its evolution in the games industry with Almassizadeh as its Chief Strategic Advisor?