We hear I’minlikewithyou founder Charles Forman is in the process of raising a $2 million round from “big-name individuals.” (Previous investors include Digg’s Kevin Rose, Betaworks’ John Borthwick, etc.) Reached by phone today, Forman declined to comment on the funding, but he was happy to talk about his newish business strategy: Becoming a casual games studio.
In the last year, I’minlikewithyou has built four games in-house, most recently “Draw My Thing,” which has racked up more than a million plays in just a few weeks.
Going forward, Forman will be hiring third parties to code games for his platform: He’s shooting for 15 “HBO”-quality games by the end of the year, with a focus on more action games and fewer puzzle games. The challenge: Getting the best coders to develop games for him instead of the many other players in the industry, who range from mum-and-pop shops to RealNetworks, Microsoft and Yahoo.
How will I’minlikewithyou make money? Instead of ads, Forman plans on making money via micro-transactions, where people buy items within the games. This is a big business in Asia, but hasn’t caught on in the U.S.