By Rumiko Matsumoto, Founder & CEO
If I had to describe 2022 in one word, it’d be GROWTH. As we dive into 2023, we wanted to share some highlights from 2022 and a little about what we have planned for 2023.
In 2022, we surpassed our revenue goal and established fantastic partnerships. These partnerships include a16z and MakersFund, both of whom are top VC firms in the tech and gaming space. KIMARU executed and delivered the highest caliber of candidates to their portfolio companies for executive searches. We also continued to place candidates for our industry friends in the mobile gaming and ad-tech space.
From studios working on UGC games, to web3 games, to games that allow for streamers to play games with their fans while streaming – we’ve had the pleasure of partnering with some really neat studios in 2022.
We studied and learned a ton about new platforms, terminology, and trends to really immerse ourselves into the mindset of our clients. For example, this year was the first time we hired for DAOs (my parents still ask me what the heck a DAO is and it makes it extra hard that I have to try and explain it in Japanese.) While the pitch was unconventional and novel, we found two amazing folks to join our clients as a Game Director and a DAO Leader/CEO. (It helps that the Founding teams were amazing gaming-industry veterans with stellar cred.)
We hosted our first events and will kick-off the Omakas3 Series in 2023.
I started KIMARU in August of 2020, in the thick of the Covid Pandemic. This gave us almost two years to prepare for hosting our own events.
In 2022, we hosted our first Game Developers Conference (GDC), which is arguably one of the most epic gaming conferences of the year in our books. Since there is no rest for the wicked, the following quarter KIMARU hosted several events at Mobile Apps Unlocked (MAU). I am still reeling from the events and it took place in June! (Shout out to YouAppi, MetricWorks, SensorTower, and 5 o’clock Group for some awesome co-sponsored events!)
While we’ll continue to host events at the relevant industry conferences, KIMARU will also kick off our inaugural Omakas3 Series, which we are super excited about! In short, KIMARU will be sending Omakas3 NFTs to folks in the KIMARU network. Members will use the NFTs to RSVP to events. Shout out to HustleFund for the great course on token-gating and the encouragement to make my course project a reality!
More details to follow but in short, KIMARU wants to create a space where our clients, candidates, and executives in the industries in which we recruit can network, enjoy delicious curated meals, and engage in great discussions.
Our Growing Team
While growth in team size is exciting for many reasons, my vision is for KIMARU to always be a boutique agency and work with a curated set of clients at a time. The ability to operate as a lean and highly-performing team provides us with the focused white-glove service our clients know us for.
I am fortunate that in year 2, I built a lean but mighty team of Recruiters who have supported KIMARU in our searches. We also had our first intern with us this past summer and I am thrilled to announce that she’ll be joining us full-time in July!
Thank You and See you in 2023!
The tech industry was hit hard with layoffs in the second half of 2022, but we hope that we can support those that have been affected. We see early-stage startups continue to hire and grow – and the U.S. unemployment rate sits right around 3.7% – which is where we were for years prior to the pandemic. There’s still many opportunities out there and we hope to help match candidates with the right ones.
Thank you to all of our clients, candidates, and supporters who have helped us get where we are. While the first year of KIMARU was a mixed bag of emotions as a team of 1 and all of the stresses of founding a company during the pandemic, year 2 has pleasantly surprised me as a steady year of finding our groove, growing a team, and reaffirming my decision to create KIMARU. I have no doubts that year 3 will be an exciting year with new challenges, growth, and expansion.
We look forward to continuing to support clients and candidates, alike. Follow us on LinkedIn to stay up-to-date on what we’re up to.