Casual Games Association Concludes Successful Casual Connect Conference

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SEATTLE– July 27, 2007– The Casual Games Association today announced a successful close of the Casual Connect Seattle 2007 conference. The event, which took place between July 17th and 19th at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, WA, is the largest casual gaming conference in the world.

“With more than 200 million players worldwide, 60 million downloads each month, and a market size that is expected to be $1.5 billion in 2008, casual gaming is big business,” said Jessica Tams, managing director of the Casual Games Association.“Indeed, a major theme from everyone at the conference was that the future of gaming is casual games. The rapid resurgence and interest for casual games presents members of the Casual Games Association with a wide range of business opportunities. We look forward to continuing our momentum with an even better event next year.”

By all measures the event was deemed a major success by sponsors, publishers, distributors, speakers, casual games developers, retailers, investors, and the media. Over 60 exhibitors participated at the event, which featured more than 40 new exhibitors, and conference attendance increased by over 60 percent from 800 in 2006 to over 1300 this year.

Supporting the growing influence and importance of Casual Connect were the compelling keynote speakers and major announcements made at the conference. Of note were:

    <*>MTV Networks' Nickelodeon Kids and Family Group announced its commitment to invest $100 million over the next two years in development, distribution and creation of casual gaming titles, sites and platforms. <*>King.com, the world's largest skill games site, and digital entertainment services provider RealNetworks®, Inc. announced an exclusive, multi-year partnership that will integrate gaming content across the companies' gaming portals. <*>RealNetworks®, Inc. announced an agreement with Mattel, Inc. to develop, publish and distribute Scrabble®, UNO® and several Mattel game titles for downloadable PC and online play throughout the world (excluding the U.S. and Canada for Scrabble). <*>PopCap Games, the leading developer and publisher of casual games, announced that it acquired SpinTop Games, a consumer online destination and developer of casual games and Retro64, a developer of casual games. <*>Microsoft introduced GoPets on Windows Live Messenger. Microsoft Casual Games and GoPets bring people, pets and games together in a global social networking experience. <*>Lifetime Television, the most popular women's television network, and RealNetworks, Inc., announced a new partnership to create Lifetime Presents, a series of downloadable casual games specifically targeting the predominantly female audience of both Lifetime Television and RealArcade®. <*>Oberon Media, the world’s leading multi-platform casual-games company, cemented its bid to become the first company to deliver global, integrated casual-games solutions across the interactive TV, online and mobile platforms, with the announcement of its intention to acquire PixelPlay, the world’s leading creator and distributor of games and entertainment in the interactive TV market.
Notable speeches and keynotes by:
    <*>Marc Whitten, General Manager, Microsoft Casual Games <*>Steve Youngwood, Executive Vice President, MTV Networks <*>Nolan Bushnell, CEO and founder of uWink, Inc, as well as founder of Atari Corp and Chuck E. Cheese. <*>John Vechey, co-Founder and Director, PopCap Games. <*>Ed Zobrist, President, Sierra Online/Vivendi
The Casual Games Association will next host Casual Connect conferences in Kyiv, Ukraine on October 17-19, 2007 and in Amsterdam, Netherlands Winter 2008. Next year’s Casual Connect Seattle will be held in the summer of 2008 at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, WA. For information on exhibit and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Luke Burtis at luke@casualconnect.org.

About the Casual Games Association

The Casual Games Association is an international trade organization dedicated to promoting casual games and providing educational resources for the game development community. The association hosts annual conferences in Seattle, Kyiv and Amsterdam; publishes a trade magazine; and issues research reports on the casual games industry. For more information about the association, visit www.casualgamesassociation.org.

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Contact:

David T. Oro

For the Casual Games Association

(707) 558-8585• david@orogroup.com


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