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When Metanomics started, virtual goods economies were just starting to be taken seriously. Now, the virtual goods industry has moved well beyond Silicon Valley and has the interest of Wall Street. From Facebook to Zynga to Second Life, the virtual goods industry has seen rapid growth over the past few years. They have redefined games where subscription-based models have been replaced by free-to-play games that sell virtual goods to a thin sliver of their player base: what are often called the ‘whales’.
Michael (Mick) Bobroff is no stranger to emerging markets. In the early 1990s, Mick was deeply involved in another new frontier which opened up in unpredictable ways: Russia. Now, a Partner at Ernst & Young, Bobroff is examining the challenges and opportunities of the virtual goods market.
The embrace of social gaming platforms and virtual goods will, he believes, lead to continued opportunities for venture capitalists and we’ll soon see large firms making acquisitions in the virtual goods arena.
Mick is an audit partner in Ernst & Young’s Northern California Technology practice who specializes in the software, digital media and on-line games industries with over 20 years of experience.
Mick serves a portfolio of SEC registrants and non-public companies. His portfolio of clients are involved in enterprise and consumer software, social games, multi-player on-line role playing games, mobile applications, online media services, wireless networking and firewall technologies. Mick is very experienced with complex revenue recognition models and is leading the firm’s efforts in providing its views and guidance on revenue recognition on the sale of virtual goods.
Mick spent 6 years at the Ernst & Young offices in Moscow, Russia and Singapore from 1992- 1998 where he served U.S. multinational companies in the former Soviet Union and in Southeast Asia.
Mick graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of California, Berkeley
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