New start-up secures $4.5 million finance; Rob Pardo and Nexon's Min Kim advising

Blizzard vets form Booyah

Silicon Valley start-up Booyah, formed from ex-Blizzard staff members, has secured $4.5 million of funding from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers’ iFund.

The firm was founded by Keith Lee (CEO), formerly lead producer on Diablo 3; Brian Morrisroe (CCO), formerly art lead on World of Warcraft and art director on Diablo 3; and Sam Christiansen (CTO), previously senior programmer on Diablo 3.

It’s also backed up by an advisory board including Rob Pardo, EVP of game design at Blizzard, and Min Kim, VP of marketing for Nexon.

The firm is creating a ‘playful life companion’ that mixes the immersive experiences of MMOs, the connectivity of social networks and the power of the iPhone and iPod touch. No further details have been released, but the company aims to unveil its product this spring.

“Imagine that you could play life by pursuing and sharing your passions,” said Keith Lee, CEO and co-founder.

“Booyah motivates you and others through a mobile companion, everywhere you go. You become a part of an ever-expanding social experiment, inspiring you to challenge yourself and be better at your life. We are incredibly excited to have Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and the iFund supporting us and guiding us in our vision.”

Matt Murphy, partner at , KPCB added: “We were immediately compelled by the promise of Booyah and the background of the founders. The iFund was created to help build the most promising and innovative businesses that utilise the discrete capabilities of the iPhone and iPod touch. Booyah is a terrific example.”

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