Mind Candy is ‘an entertainment company that creates magical brands with a digital heart’ and are the creators of Furi, Poppet, Luvli, Katsuma, Diavlo and Zommer (also known as Moshi Monsters).
The man behind these hugely popular pet monsters – Moshi Monsters has over 80 million registered users online – is Michael Acton Smith, CEO and creative director.
I caught up with Michael before he takes to the stage at Adobe Summit in London, May 14-15, to find out how these pet monsters came to life, what motivates him and, of course, what he’ll be sharing at Summit.
Can you tell us a bit more about how you came up with the idea of Moshi Monsters in a coffee shop?
The first game we created at Mind Candy was a very complex online and offline treasure hunt called Perplex City. It was ground breaking, but sadly it wasn’t a hit and with our money fast running out we needed another idea
I had a favourite coffee shop in Battersea that I would spend hours in doodling and daydreaming ideas. This is the location where Moshi was sparked to life. I had seen how kids loved the Internet and so wanted to create a fun but safe virtual world for them to play within. I liked the idea of populating this world with little pet monsters for them to adopt and nurture
What’s the next step in building ‘the largest entertainment brand in the world for the new digital generation’?
We’re trying to build the greatest entertainment company, rather than the ‘largest entertainment brand’.
We want to continue creating magical entertainment that kids of all ages love. Our brands have a digital heart but can be enjoyed in many other ways such as magazines, books, toys, music and movies. We have several new exciting projects bubbling away
Can you give us a little teaser into what you will be exploring in your Summit talk?
I’m going to tell the story of my entrepreneurial adventures and share the lessons learned along the way that will hopefully be useful for the audience.
I will also talk a little about the next big project we’ll be launching at Mind Candy.
What new digital approaches will you be taking on your current or future projects?
We don’t have a single digital approach, but are very aware that kids are the ultimate early adopters and it’s important for us to stay on top of what technologies and apps they are excited by.
Do you see any links between your passion in music and your entrepreneurial drive?
If you want to hear more from Michael, Mind Candy’s next big project, and of course, Monsters, register now for Adobe Summit.
Follow Michael @acton and take part in the conversation with #AdobeSummit.
See you there!