What is BiNAREE?
BiNAREE stands for the people who handle the binary well. We are making cool mobile games. I started BiNAREE in January 2015 and raised $1.8M from NCSOFT. ‘Zap Zombies’ is our star title, and we’re working on 2 different projects, which haven’t been revealed yet.
Making a fun game is the passion of all the gaming companies. To define fun, however, everybody might have different thoughts about it. Our goal is to make something fun that is universal. Due to our strategy, understanding cultures beside the Korean one is important. Unlike other Korean game studios, we would like to be international in many ways.
BiNAREE is composed of international members. In one of our projects, we have 2 British programmers and 2 American artists. Due to the international team members, English is the main language in our company. Some of us come from Korean mobile game companies like Com2uS, NHN Entertainment and SundayToz, and others have overseas experience in Disney Interactive Seattle, Rovio Entertainment and Ngmoco. Thanks to the diversity, we understand both Asian and Western game attitudes. And this multi-cultural experience is our strength.
How were you able to mix fun and work at the same time?
Playing a game is always fun, but sometimes making a game is not so pleasant. Handling a ton of bugs, finding logical flaws and selecting the best graphics is not always ecstatic. But the best part is teamwork. I try my best to instil the best teamwork possible. Once you have a good team, the communication itself goes smoothly. We just talk about the game idea and discuss about the story. This is an awesome part.
With a good team, you can rely on your colleagues in many ways, and it will create a good atmosphere. I enjoy that and try to share my thoughts with the team.
About your internationalization: why did you decide to expand abroad and how are you doing it?
While running a mobile game company, thinking about the global market is essential. Although, the Korean market is big. It represents 5-10% of the global market for games. And these days, Korean market is getting polarized. For a small startup like us, it’s getting harder to make enough revenue to support the company. Due to this situation, many small startups have troubles with making revenue and raising funds. In 2014, $143M were invested in the game industry but only $16M in 2015. So searching outside of Korea was inevitable for us.
Why is a network of entrepreneurs important for you to develop your business?
To me, building a network is not just knowing others. Trying to help them and actually do something together without expecting any compensation from them is true networking for me. While building up the network, people would know what my strength and passion are. When they have an idea or a project, on which I can be of any help, I hope they will think of me. I want to know what others need and how I can help them. That’s how I raised fund from my investor. I just enjoyed talking about game and the game business with him. And one day, he gave me the opportunity to start a company, with him.