Amber is one of the gaming studios experiencing the highest growth on the international market, and the entire success story originated right from Romania. Now a truly multinational company, Amber is currently involved in multiple projects, functioning as an outsourcing company, and has ambitious plans for the future.
We spoke with Cătălin Butnariu, the Head of Corporate Development at Amber Studio, about the company's direction, international expansion, the challenges faced along the way, and the possibility of a AAA game produced by a Romanian studio.
connect: How have the recent years been for Amber Studio in terms of development and business expansion?
Cătălin Butnariu: The recent years have marked a rapid and sustained expansion for Amber, with an average annual growth rate of around 50%. The company began its international expansion in 2020, and at present, Amber is present in eight cities across Europe and North America, with an imminent announcement of its presence in Asia.
This year, in May, Amber moved to a new headquarters in Botoșani, a city where it has been present since October 2019 and now boasts over 120 employees. In June, Amber opened a new studio in Warsaw, focusing on developing games for PC and consoles.
We also plan to continue our geographic expansion, and we are exploring opportunities in South America, for example.
connect: How did the logistical aspect of opening new studios outside the country unfold, and what were the challenges?
Cătălin Butnariu: We began our geographical expansion outside Romania during the pandemic, and the challenge came from the fact that we had to work remotely extensively, with travel restrictions in place. Opening an office in a new location, especially one as distant as Guadalajara in Mexico, without being physically present in the process, proved to be quite challenging.
Subsequently, we opened offices in Montreal, Kyiv, and Warsaw, where the process was somewhat easier due to the experience gained.
Another challenge was the opening of the office in Ukraine. We have been working with Ukrainian developers since 2021, and in early 2022, we announced the opening of the office in Kyiv. The war began, and we did everything possible to support our employees there and ensure their safety as much as possible. Currently, the team in Ukraine is still working, which is remarkable given the conditions under which they are doing so.
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