Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment is adding a social element to its mobile game business with the acquisition of Plexchat, a social gaming startup that built a chat system for mobile gamers.
Warner Bros. is picking up the Palo Alto, California-based startup created by founder Shawn Foust, who raised about $7 million for the business about a year ago. It’s a little surprising that the relatively young startup sold early, but it was fishing about for a business to pursue.
Plexchat started in 2015 as a communication platform, but in January it started an esports league for Clash Royale.
Warner Bros. said the acquisition elevates the social experience within the company’s suite of mobile titles by integrating enhanced community features and chat capabilities to encourage and facilitate increased player engagement.
“Shawn and team bring tremendous social expertise in the mobile gaming space, which allows us to grow our chat capabilities for our slate of mobile games,” said Steven Chiang, executive vice president of worldwide production and studios at Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, in a statement. “Advancing the social aspect of our mobile games in order to deliver the best experience for our players is a top priority for us.”
Foust will join WB Games San Francisco in a newly created role as vice president of central product management. He will be responsible for overseeing the vision of the mobile chat platform, identifying market opportunities and implementing industry-leading practices.
“Nurturing the connective tissue between players and mobile games has always been the prime focus for Plexchat,” said Foust, in a statement. “Being a part of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment will allow us to continue to do just that – this time armed with even greater resources and access to the most coveted intellectual property in mobile games.”