SOURCE: New Enterprise Associates

December 08, 2006 08:15 ET

NEA Funds Realtime Worlds' Expansion

Seasoned Video Game Veterans Partner With Leading VC Firm

MENLO PARK, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 8, 2006 -- New Enterprise Associates (NEA) announces a $31 million financing of U.K.-based Realtime Worlds, a leading international, independent video game developer. Funds from the financing will be used to expand the company's talent base and to create new gaming franchises. As a result of the investment, Harry Weller, NEA Partner, and Patrick Chung, NEA Principal, will join the Realtime Worlds board of directors.

"More than anything, visionary creative talent supported by deep, long-standing partnerships and forward-thinking technology will spell success for new video game companies," said Mr. Chung. "Realtime Worlds has all these elements in spades and we are honored to deepen and expand its reach to help power continued growth."

Realtime Worlds is headquartered in Dundee, Scotland with offices in Seoul, South Korea. The Company was founded by David Jones, creator of the Grand Theft Auto and Lemmings games franchises, which have sold over 70 million units and generated $2.5 billion in sales. The Company has two games currently in production, the first of which is scheduled for release in 2007. Worldwide agreements have thus far been signed with two publishers: Microsoft Game Studios will publish Realtime Worlds' Crackdown for Xbox 360. Webzen, the Korean online games giant, will publish All Points Bulletin (APB), a massively multi-player online game for both PC and Xbox 360.

According to Realtime Worlds' CEO and Creative Director David Jones, "Partnering with New Enterprise Associates opens up a bigger world for us in terms of talent acquisition and resource development. This investment will allow us to attract, develop and retain gifted and passionate developers, whether they live in the U.K. now or are drawn to us specifically for the breathtaking games we will soon offer. We are thrilled to be part of the passion and financial resources that NEA has offered."

"In our search for a funding partner, NEA very quickly established itself as our partner of choice," said Ian Hetherington, Chairman of Realtime Worlds. "For decades, they have proven their commitment to their portfolio companies' success. Their enthusiastic willingness to partner with Realtime Worlds demonstrates their thought leadership and is reflective of the outstanding technological and creative ability that exists at Realtime Worlds. We welcome Harry and Patrick to our board, and look forward to the insights they will bring."

About Realtime Worlds

Realtime Worlds, a software entertainment company founded in 2002, is directed by some of the video game industry's most well regarded figures. Dave Jones, the creator of the Grand Theft Auto and Lemmings franchises, is joined by Tony Harman, former Director of Development and Acquisition at Nintendo of America, and by Ian Hetherington, former Managing Director of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and founder of Psygnosis. The majority of the Company's 140 employees are based at its Dundee, Scotland headquarters. Crackdown for XBox 360 (www.xbox.com/crackdown), the company's first title, will be released in 2007 and will be published by Microsoft Game Studios. All Points Bulletin (www.apb.com) will follow Crackdown's release and will be published by Webzen for Xbox 360 and for PC online gaming. For more information on Realtime Worlds, visit www.realtimeworlds.com.

About NEA

New Enterprise Associates (NEA) is a leading venture capital firm focused on helping entrepreneurs create and build major new enterprises that use technology to improve the way we live, work and play. Since its founding in 1978, the firm has followed the same core principles: supporting its entrepreneurs, providing an excellent return to its limited partners and practicing its profession with the highest standards and respect. Practicing classic venture capital for 28 years, NEA focuses on investments at all stages of a company's development, from seed-stage through IPO. With approximately $8.5 billion in committed capital, NEA's experienced management team has invested in over 500 companies, of which more than 150 have gone public and more than 200 have been acquired. NEA has offices in Reston, Virginia, Menlo Park, California and Baltimore, Maryland. For additional information, visit www.nea.com.

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