Former Bolt.com Owner Gets Into Games

Jay Gould, a former owner of pioneering social network and video-sharing site Bolt.com, has launched Gamers Media, an ad network for casual game sites. It is one of several other startups, such as NeoEdge and Mochi Media, which launched last year, seeking to monetize the hugely popular casual games market.

After the bankruptcy of Bolt.com last year, Gould said he was looking for his next opportunity. He’d noted an advertiser rush to gaming sites while at Bolt, and decided that should be his next endeavor. New York-based Gamers Media reaches 20 million uniques and has about 40 properties on which it can place ads, and it has signed a partnership with Adify to build out its publisher network. So far, Gamers Media is profitable, but Gould said he doesn’t disclose revenue.

He did say the CPMs on his site range from $10 to $20 for brand advertising, with tactics such as page takeovers and custom-built “advergames” netting a higher CPM. The site shares an average of 50 percent of its revenue with publishers that range from Big Fish Games to Lycos’ Gamesville property. I love that the company is making money, and is profitable, but the value of Gamers Media is only as good as its publishers. It needs to corner the market fast — or score some exclusive arrangements with big publishers — in order to compete.

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