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What Can Finance Teams Learn from Pokemon Go?

Finance teams using cellphones together.

Call it the runaway hit of the summer: Within a month of arriving on U.S. smartphones, Nintendo’s Pokemon Go seems to be everywhere. The location-based mobile game, which encourages users to capture and battle virtual creatures, has been downloaded more than 75 million times, according to market-research firm Sensor Tower. And the ascent has shattered records: Apple says Pokemon Go is now the all-time top app release for first-week downloads.

But for all the fun and games on the consumer side, gaming executives know that every business is in need of careful financial planning, streamlined reporting, and sophisticated forecasting. That’s a lesson another mobile gaming firm, Glu Mobile, learned firsthand.

Finance teams juggle multiple currencies

Glu Mobile, a leading developer of free-to-play games for smartphones and tablets, has offices that stretch from Korea to Canada, Russia to the United States. That global reach fuels its revenue growth, but it also meant the finance team had to juggle multiple currencies for reporting and forecasting.

Rather than using one cohesive reporting platform that was capable of automatically converting currencies into a unified data set, each office used its own Excel spreadsheet. That meant settling on a single, unified version of the numbers was arduous and time-consuming.

Finance leaders considered a few forecast applications before settling on Adaptive Planning. They say they were drawn to the product because it was quick to implement and easily usable for both the FP&A team and non-numbers folks.

Full visibility into consolidated financials

Adaptive Insights’ multicurrency functionality made global scale forecasting exponentially easier—and more accurate. And that increased visibility into the data helped business owners feel more empowered about the budget. That meant the finance team could spend less time trying to verify and align disparate data sets and more time acting as a strategic partner to the C-suite.

“The gaming industry is fast-paced,” said Todd Robinson, Glu Mobile’s senior manager, FP&A. “Adaptive Planning gives us the insight to help stay ahead of that pace and make good business decisions.”

Keeping up with consumer whims

It’s not only CFOs at gaming companies who have to adjust to a quicker clip of business. Thanks to the proliferation of social sharing and digital marketing, a product can go from release to gangbusters in a matter of minutes.

And while explosive business is something to celebrate, it can put a particularly rough strain on CFOs, who must recalibrate company forecasts and prep for the wild ride ahead. International releases may be accelerated, the talent pool may have to grow exponentially, partnerships may come to fruition years earlier than expected.

When you have the right financial tools in place, your team will be faster and more confident in supporting those strategic shifts. In other words, it’s game on!

Visit the Customer Success section of our website to learn how companies are using Adaptive Insights to transform FP&A.

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