Ever Try Investing in a Company's Future Sales?
A new video game console for the whole family, plus a hustle-culture takedown.
A quick (last time, I promise) refresher for those that are new; two weeks ago I hit the reset button on my weekly newsletter to share with those of you (like myself) obsessed with self-directed investing, a less restrictive way to invest in startups by featuring a company or strategy that I’m taking a hard look at — and, the best part is ANYONE can invest via equity crowdfunding (if you don't know what that is, click here).
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Side note: Can we please 2020 “hustle porn”. To spare you the diatribe, just read Reddit founder, Alexis Ohanian’s essay on why it’s so fucking toxic. My HS Senior quote was “Hard work is for people short on talent.” Thanks to the late, great George Carlin. I stand by that.
So, what is investing in potential future sales all about? It’s exactly what it sounds like. You invest in shares of a company or product’s potential future sales… sort of an old-school way of fundraising for a new product.
Take, for example, Intellivision’s new gaming console, Amico 🎮
Invest in Amico here 👉 https://bit.ly/3lLD9XA
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Company [product] Bio
To be clear, you’re not investing in the company Intellivision — which has been an OG game maker since the late 70’s, previously owned by Mattel, before a group of the original employees bought the brand back. To put this in context for those of you reading this that haven’t experienced a receding hairline yet; before PS5 vs XBOX, it was Intellivision vs Atari. Intellivision is the manufacturer of a brand new gaming console called Amico (this is what you’re investing in — well, more specifically, it’s sales). Amico redefines video game entertainment for family and friends by simplifying the entire experience with a safe, affordable, and easy-to-use platform.
Amico’s CEO Tommy Tallarico calls it, “the Disneyland of gaming consoles”. And, while I have not played it yet — the sentiment resinates. Fun fact: I used to be rather lethal at Call of Duty. Then, I got older, my reflexes slowed and I began to get destroyed by tweens and I retired (broke 🤬) my controller. So, the idea of a simpler gaming experience designed around family fun vs fast-twitch button combos is pretty appealing. Amico is an all-in-one, Nintendo Wii’ish system that allows its owner to pack and play with built-in controllers and optional phone-based controllers that enable up to 8 people to play some seriously retro games that will make Dad’s everywhere feel nostalgic.
Meet the Team
Watch my full interview with Intellivision CEO Tommy Tallarico here 👉 https://bit.ly/3lNLSbR
Tommy Tallarico is Intellivision’s CEO. Prior to this, Tommy spent more than 30+ years as a veritable video game industry icon and he’s one of the most successful video game composers of all time. Tommy has earned more than 50 industry awards and holds the Guinness Book World Record for ‘most game titles worked on’ with 300+ games — which sold over 200M+ units, generating $10B+ in revenue.
Okkkk. Tommy is a legend in the space. He has that Billy Mays-type energy (in a good way, lol) you’d expect from a CEO with his pedigree. A true believer in the brand and product. His experience speaks for itself… but, it’s worth mentioning here that when you’re looking at investing in a legacy brand versus a startup, the CEO’s ability to lead and manage global teams is even more important than how they roadmap and sell a vision. Refounding as I like to call it, is like trading for an Ace at the deadline; you’re not paying for potential, you’re paying for experience. That’s Tommy. He’s there for what he knows and who he can recruit to give Intellivision a title shot. To that end, Tommy has assembled a literal “who’s who” of gaming industry leaders including the co-founders of XBOX and Quicksilver, to name just a few.
More than $25,000,000 in purchase orders
100,000 units pre-sold, with global retail distribution
Console comes equipped with 2 controllers, 6 games priced at $249
Dozens of new games already in development priced at $9.99 per
As far as pre-launch success goes, it couldn't be much better. Breakeven for Amico is 200,000 units and they’re already half way there. I guess this is where the Dream Team comes into play… even if the console were to flop; the names and titles associated with it should be able to push initial sales pretty far — then it’s up to consumer demand. Because if one thing isn’t entirely obvious about retail video game distribution; NOTHING brings people (COVID notwithstanding) to Best Buy and Target like a good game launch! So, if consumers love the system, a $10 price point for new games sets this thing up to become a cash cow for Intellivision (and maybe you and I).
Film, TV and music are such dominant cultural forces that we often forget that gaming is the largest industry in the entertainment sector. The gaming industry takes in a whopping $160 billion per year, And the gap between gaming and other entertainment is likely to increase due to the pandemic-induced gaming boom.
Amico isn’t developing a new game or gaming platform, though. Its ambitions are even grander than that. Amico is building an entirely new gaming console, which is a much steeper challenge.
In developing a new console, Amico is competing with Microsoft and Sony, two enormous companies that just released new versions of their Xbox and PlayStation consoles, respectively, and have virtually limitless budgets to market them.
Amico isn’t going after hardcore gamers, though — it fasions itself as a simpler, more family-friendly console. There’s certainly a market there, as evidenced by Nintendo, whose games and hardware continue to sell well despite not being as technologically advanced as the Xbox or PlayStation.
But that puts Amico in direct competition with Nintendo, one of the most iconic brands of all-time and another company with deep pockets when it comes to marketing.
Amico does have nostalgia going for it, though. It has already forged deals to bring back titles from defunct but once-beloved gaming publishers, such as Atari.
More than that, Amico’s central premise is sound — gaming has become too complicated and competitive for the average gamer, and there is room for a more family-centric gaming console, especially with families confined indoors during the pandemic. (To that end, Nintendo has been re-releasing its old consoles, and their signature games, in recent years to cash in on the trend.)
And yet the market for gaming continues to grow. The number of gamers in the U.S. is expected to jump 5% this year, a higher growth rate than the 3.6% increase the industry experienced in 2019. With all this excitement around gaming, it’s entirely plausible that a company could come along and challenge the Microsoft-Nintendo-Sony oligopoly.
Terms & Takeaway
Invest in Amico here 👉 https://bit.ly/3lLD9XA
Security Type: FGS-Amico Shares (Reg A+)
Investment Goal: $15,000,000
Raised (as of publishing): $6,215,743
Minimum Investment: $1,000
Here's what I like: Always bet on experience, because experience doesn’t leave time on the clock.
I love this team on paper!
To me, investing in legacy brands is sorta my jam. I’ve acquired 3 different existing brands in my career and I do it because the most difficult thing in business is growing a brand that means something to people — the rest is execution. So, when an opportunity to invest in a legacy brand and a team full of stars appears, I perk up. With Amico, the opportunity is pretty simple: a) do you think the world needs another console? b) does nostalgia sell? c) can Amico become the new household board game?
IMO there’s plenty of room for another gaming system, especially if it brings a new value prop to the market. Nostalgia doesn’t need to sell everything, it just needs to give enough people a reason to try it and if the experience resonates — Amico sells itself. And, due to Covid, family time actually means something again (which might just make this whole shitbox of a year worth it). So, I can 100% see a super simple, family-friendly console becoming a huge hit!
Here's what I don't love: There’s a definite Quibi-ness fear factor for me here. If you haven’t read my Quibi prediction, here you go 👉 https://bit.ly/36OdJlZ. Long story short, you get a bunch of industry legends together to build the future they’ve been talking about for years and they completely lose touch with what the actual consumer wants and cares about. Amico goes against all conventional wisdom trying to sell a slower-paced, low-tech, PG-rated gaming system to a world going Mach XII with behemoths like Apple, Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. That said, 2020 comes with a Covid*, people are doing a lot of old school shit to keep it together. Also, calling Amico low-tech is a tad unfair; it’s just a unique blend of vintage software with high tech hardware. Regardless, it’s an obvious question that must be raised after Quibi blew through a billion dollars on something everyone except the founders already knew wouldn't work.
Who should invest and why: It’s $1,000 minimum, so it’s not a cheap investment by any means… and it doesn’t even come with a free console. But, if you’re a game nerd or see the potential for Amico to sell even a fraction of the units Nintendo has sold with its NES reboot — you’re in the money! If you’re unicorn hunting, this probably isn’t for you. However, if you’d like to augment your income with an investment that (if successful) pays out immediately; this is a great deal.
As always, investing in private companies is super high risk, anything can happen. So, don't invest money you can't afford to turn into confetti... Intellivision has been around a long time, but Amico is new 🤞
Invest in Amico here 👉 https://bit.ly/3lLD9XA
DM me on Twitter 🐦 @kitun