mobiThinking guide to mobile agencies: Golden Gekko

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Golden Gekko: in brief

Type of agency: Developer of mobile: Web; apps; content; games and services.
Founded: 2005.
Acquisitions: N/A.
Main offices: London, UK (HQ); Barcelona, Spain; Berlin, Germany; New York, USA; Stockholm, Sweden; Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Employees (in mobile): 130.
Ownership: Privately held; VC ownership 16%.
Contact details: info (at)
Recent news:
• October 2011 – O2 Media App shortlisted for EMMA Awards.
• Aug 2011 – Golden Gekko makes the 50 top mobile innovators.
• May 2011 – Golden Gekko makes the top 20 hottest digital businesses.
Profile submitted by: Julia Henkel, Marketing Manager.
Profile first published: December 2011.

Golden Gekko: in depth

1) Global annual revenue from mobile: Band D (US $5-10 million).
2) Is the mobile business profitable? Yes.
3) How is the company funded? Privately held; Active Capital (Spain) owns 16%, based on investment of €0.5 million (US $0.67 million) in 2007.
4) Proportion of business related to mobile: 100%.
5) Business split: Mobile strategy 5%; creative 10%; technical development 70%; licenses and maintenance 15%.
6) Key mobile activities: Mobile apps 65%; mobile Web 15%; mobile games: 5%; moble financial services 5%; m-commerce 5%; location-based services (LBS): 5%.
7) Specialties/expertise: Golden Gekko is the largest producer of mobile apps in Europe. Its scale and proprietary tools allows it to deliver large international and complex projects faster and more efficiently than our competitors. Golden Gekko produces apps and mobile Websites across all major platforms, including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, Symbian, Bada, WebOS and HTML5).
8) Main competitors: Premium digital agencies such as AKQA, Razorfish, LBI and Ustwo, but Golden Gekko provides a broader spectrum of app development.
9) Type of clients/industries: Global brands and companies.
10) Client base: Since 2006, Golden Gekko has delivered more than 600 apps and mobile sites for over 100 brands and agencies across 30 countries on all major platforms. Apps and mobile sites range from business-critical solutions to one-off campaigns. Clients include retailers (Mango, Phones4u, Ikea), FMCG (Unilever, Procter & Gamble, Cadbury’s), food and beverage (Coca Cola, Absolut Vodka, Heineken, Arla, Barilla and Apetina), media (Reuters, BBC, Freemantle/TV4, Bloomberg), automobile (Volkswagen, Audi, Mini Cooper), telecom (Vodafone, Telefonica, Sony-Ericsson, LG), entertainment (Disney, Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures) and enterprise (Maconomy/Deltek, Accenture, Artificial Solutions).
11) Geographical coverage: UK 60%; US 15%; Sweden 10%; Spain 5%; rest of world: 10%.
12) Works most closely with: Biggest clients include the Yellow Pages (in eight countries), Telefonica/O2, LG, BAA, Vodafone and H&M etc. Key partners include O2 Media, OMD and Tribal DDB.

Video: O2 Priority Moments
• The profile continues below.

13) Case studies:
There are lots of case studies here including Absolut Vodka, Arla, BAA, Camp Rock (Disney), Duracell, Jack Daniel’s, Nokia, The Unborn (Universal Pictures) and Vodafone McLaren. Some of the best/most recent include:
O2 Priority Moments – The O2 Priority app uses GPS-based geo-location technology and user preference to target voucher-based offers via mobile Web, iPhone or Android app to O2’s UK customers that have registered to receive them. Relevant offers from participating high-street outlets such as Toni & Guy, Yo! Sushi, French Connection and Ask Pizza are sent to the phone based on the user’s current location and are redeemed by showing the screen to sales staff at point of sale. Helped by a UK £6 million (US $9.37 million) TV, outdoor and press campaign, O2 received close to 500,000 registrations in the first month. • See case study.
Mango MNG Shopping App – Vasava and Golden Gekko developed an engaging and innovative app that allows the user to “try on” the clothes before buying with the fun mix-and-match section – snap a picture of yourself then drag and drop clothes onto your body – as well as browse the collection, find the nearest store and purchase items on the go. In the first week there were 22,000 downloads. A version with the male collection is due to be released soon. • See case study.
National Guard Drop Defender
MyDog – There are 13 million dog lovers in the UK. In September 2011, Golden Gekko and Fetch Media launched MyDog UK, the first mobile social-network application for dog-owners enabling them to connect with other dog owners, find vets, breeders, dog walkers, as well as a wealth of dog-related information to help keep their dogs fit and healthy, make travelling with a dog easier with dog friendly hotels, restaurants and pubs. • See case study.
14) Industry Accolades:
a) O2 Media: iPad app
The Effective Mobile Marketing Awards (EMMAs) 2011 – finalist.
b) Lynx: Get in There mobile tools
MMA Global Awards 2008 – Best use of mobile marketing for branding: Global and Regional (EMEA) winner.
D&AD Awards 2008 – Mobile marketing: Yellow Pencil (top award) winner.

Video case study: The multi-award-winning… Lynx: Get in There campaign.
Lynx from Unilever (called Axe in other countries) aimed to teach boys of the Internet-generation a thing or two about seducing ladies in the real world, with the help of some mobile-based ‘weapons of mass seduction’. The mobile tools were created in partnership with BBH.
• The profile continues below.

15) How do you sell mobile to your clients? The mobile phone is used everywhere and most consumer brands have hundreds of potential use cases where consumers can interact with their business by mobile phone. All consumer businesses need to have a long-term mobile strategy and establish a future-proof mobile platform to leverage the mobile channel. To achieve this brands need an experienced and reliable partner that can scale with them internationally.
16) What return on investment (ROI) should your clients expect from mobile? It depends on the objectives pursued. For many companies, the purpose of mobile campaigns is to create awareness, position the brand or for PR reasons, but for other companies mobile is now a serious business, with mobile contributing a fair share of revenue via m-commerce etc.
17) Membership of industry bodies: Mobile Marketing Association (MMA).
18) Certifications/accreditations: Tier 1 RIM/BlackBerry, HP WebOS and Symbian developers; Certified iOS developers; Preferred supplier status for Google Android Development; Preferred supplier status for Samsung Bada.
19) What needs to happen to accelerate mobile marketing/Web/services over the next five years? It is happening already and it will continue to happen at a rapid rate. Those who don’t invest now will fall behind.
20) In 2015, mobile will be… As important as the PC Web for the majority of businesses.

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