EXCLUSIVE: We May Have Found The Next Candy Crush

Benzinga recently noticed very interesting comment on Danny Hammett’s LinkedIn page:
“Stay tuned for what's next. Our team is one created with the top talent globally on the mobile and console development ecosystem . We will be launching our first mobile title shortly and it will be a historic milestone in mobile gaming and social / political genre.”
When we saw the man whose creation, leadership and involvement in such iconic brands as Tony Hawk, Cabelas Big Game Hunter , Spiderman, and the Call of Duty Franchises drops a hint like that on LinkedIn, we had to speak with him.

So we called Danny and he agreed to answer our questions about his new game, one that will likely be larger than Candy Crush and certainly has the potential to remain relevant far beyond a "fad" game .
The Next Candy Crush?
Danny told us he decided to gather brand partnerships together and offer those brands a key core demographic to market to. By bringing this targeted demographic to the game and brand much like the Tony Hawk franchise did to rally the skater community around not only Tony Hawk’s brand but also the DCs, Vans, Etnies, and Airwalks of the world, Danny expects to create a lasting ecosystem. HKA Digital Studios is helping to blend corporate and celebrity branding efforts with a community already identifying itself with the cannabis industry.
When describing his new creation, Danny asked us to “imagine the Sims meets Farmville" and then added "there’s real brands in it and you can do real world activities." The game has the design features of a platform that has been very successful but most importantly proven at maintaining users for a long time.”

Image Courtesy Of HKA Digital Studios
By combining mobile gaming and brands Danny is able to control the cost of acquiring new users. He doesn’t have to go out and buy aggregated users from a third-party to capture. He can have brands and celebrities market for him. Danny told us he has over 50 plus celebrities and leading brands already lined up to offer their personal and corporate support in and out of the game.
A possible branding example would be Nike's recently released Hemp Shoe ahead of 420, the so called Stoner Holiday celebrated on April 20th. Nike’s efforts remained limited to the company's exposure through their social media platforms and network of dedicated customers.
Nike could have partnered with HKA Digital Studios to brand their sneaker into the game. Nike could have taken advantage of the larger cannabis community HKA is building by offering an in-game purchase of the sneaker for users to put on their avatars while also offering those same users a chance to purchase the actual sneaker for themselves, capitalizing on the communities collective support for the larger issue of cannabis legalization.
By offering brands a place to market, HKA Digital Studios expects bring in over $150 million in revenue for FY 2016.
Celebrity Branding And Social Media Potential
With well over 50 and growing daily Celebrities and brands already signed up and more considering or agreeing to partner with HKA Digital Studios, Danny is able to capture the influence of those brands and help monetize them through a core-demographic community concentrated into his game’s ecosystem. He does not have to pay the celebrities.
The incentive for celebrities is to increase their brand sales by marketing product through the platform and share their involvement with the project on all their social media platforms.

Image Courtesy Of HKA Digital StudiosThese brands already support the genre , Danny says he simply has given them a way to differentiate themselves from " their competition as well show how "hip " they are !

For a company valued under $100 million, Danny appears to be on the cusp of the next $5 billion Candy Crush idea, which is mind-blowing!
Keep your eyes on Danny Hammett and HKA Digital Studios. He has the pedigree, the intelligence, the product, the enthusiasm and the community strength to change the way brands use mobile games.
Danny told us before we finished our interview that we “haven’t seen my final trick yet.”

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