John Earner, formerly VP and head of product at social gaming company Playfish, was an Entrepreneur in Residence for all of six months at Accel Partners’ UK office. This week he’s closed a round of funding from investors, including Accel, for his own entrepreneurial endeavor.
His new company, Space Ape, raised $2.6 million in venture backing from Accel Partners, Initial Capital, Connect Ventures, and angel investor Gigi Levy.
Here is all he’d share about the project, which remains based on London:
Space Ape is a stealth startup founded by John Earner, previously Head of Product at Playfish, Simon Hade, an early Product guy at Skype, and Toby Moore, previously the CTO of Mind Candy. Space Ape may or may not be working on games. They aren’t saying.
Since Space Ape isn’t saying, I will: They’re working on games. The company’s URL is spaceapegames.com, after all.
Electronic Arts bought Playfish Games for $400 million in 2009. Playfish was touted as a social gaming competitor to Zynga. The company was backed by Accel Partners; Earner joined the firm the as an EIR in February of this year.
Earner lured Simon Hade, a Senior Director of Product Management, away from Playfish as his co-founder. Meanwhile Playfish has faced further senior departures: Catharina Mallet, who’d been put in charge of EA’s Sims Social product, left the company in May for King.com, the European social game company.