Online gaming startup We R Interactive raises $5 million from private backers

Online games publisher We R Interactive this morning announced that it has raised $5 million in second round funding from a slew of private investors, including Elio Leoni-Sceti, former CEO of EMI Music and Paul Fitzsimons, ex-media sector partner at Apax Partners. The company secured initial funding upon launch back in July 2010, although it’s unclear how much they raised then.

The proceeds of the financing round will be used to support the ongoing development and international roll-out of the startup’s first social game, I AM PLAYR, a point-of-view game that allow players to experience the life of football players through their eyes.

The game was launched in March, and We R Interactive says it expects to develop new sports games, as well as expand its portfolio to further genres, including fashion and music.

I AM PLAYR fuses live action video, interactive story-telling and first-person perspective game play and can be played both on Facebook and on the dedicated game website. The startup has lined up game sponsorships from major brands such as Nike, Ginsters and Red Bull.

The company’s existing shareholders also participated in the funding round.

This includes people like Peter Mead, founder of ad agency Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO; Fru Hazlitt, former Yahoo and Gcap Media boss, and ITV’s commercial and online director; and Eric Fellner, co-founder of Working Title.

We R Interactive is headed by former Sony and Eidos executive, David Rose, ex-ITV Interactive Commissioning Editor Oli Madgett, and chaired by ex-media analys, Richard Dale.