We hear that successful games entrepreneur Dylan Collins – the supremo who sold Demonware to Activision for US$15m and whose subsequent venture Jolt was snapped up by GameStop – has become chairman of a promising Cork technology company whose ambition it is to be the Google of tree data.
Enterprise Ireland-supported Irish clean-tech firm TreeMetrics, led by two young former foresters (Enda Keane and Garret Mullooly) also supported by IBM and Coillte,aims to revolutionise the forestry industry, making it cleaner, more CO2-friendly, and ultimately helping foresters increase their bottom line, while protecting the environment as best they can.
The company, which was formed in 2005, is understood to be doubling its workforce to 20 this year.
The company has pioneered a unique cloud-based platform that also harnesses Google Earth, to bring foresters into the digital century using cloud computing. It has recently secured contracts with some of the planet’s most prominent state forest owners, including the British Forestry Commission, Forestry South Australia and the state forest owner in Finland – Metsahallitus.
Dylan Collins’ story has been inspirational. While at Trinity College, Collins built and sold his first company, a mobile software venture. After graduating he began building his second company – Demonware – which developed the software that allowed the world’s top-grossing console games like Call of Duty to be played over the internet.
When Collins was 26, Activision, the world’s biggest games publisher, acquired the company for US$15m. Following the acquisition, Collins realised a new major shift was occurring in the games business – the move to browser-based gaming – and went to work on a new venture, Jolt. GameStop – a retail giant employing 48,000 people worldwide in 6,700 stores – made a major undisclosed investment in Jolt two years ago to capitalise on the obvious opportunities in advertising and micropayments.
As well as Jolt, Collins has been working away on a group e-commerce site for consumer electronics called Gruupy.com.
In April last year Collins announced today that he was leaving Jolt Online Gaming and GameStop and is understood to have been based mainly in London since then. He says his primary activity is executive chairman of an exciting new venture called Fight My Monster.