Move over, Mickey – the Angry Birds will be far bigger than anything Walt ever created.
At least that’s creator Rovio’s goal, according to chief managing officer Peter Vesterbacka. Speaking to Business Insider, he claimed the company is aiming to become "much bigger" than Disney, a $24bn company.
The Rovio exec pointed to today’s release of Angry Birds Space as proof of the impact the franchise can have across all forms of media. The developer has rolled out Space merchandise around the world and has even teamed up with NASA to promote the new title.
"It’s not just the launch of a game, it’s the launch of a franchise," said Vesterbacka. It’s bigger than most movie launches in Hollywood. Rovio is one of the first brands to launch from the digital to the physical world.
"Zynga is a game company. We stopped looking at ourselves as a game company. We sold 25m plush toys last year. For us, it’s about making Angry Birds available everywhere."
The Rovio exec added that the franchise has even become a phenomenon in territories where it hasn’t been officially released.
"You go shopping in China, you see Angry Birds everywhere. We are the most copied brand in China, which means we are the most loved brand," said Vesterbacka.
"We aren’t advocating piracy but we have millions of Chinese people who love Angry Birds."