Mobidictum interview with Ludovic Bodin on his book Atomic Scaling

Mobidictum has conducted and interview with Ludovic Bodin about his book, Atomic Scaling, in which he shares strategies for exponential company growth.

Entrepreneur and investor Ludovic Bodin is the creator of the 3P3R Method and the Atomic Scaling Framework. His business interests span the globe. Since 2013, he has invested in various businesses, including gaming companies, live streaming entertainment, fintech, hydrogen-powered vehicles, e-commerce, AI service companies, and a longevity company. Many of Bodin’s investments have already passed the unicorn level, with an over one billion dollars valuation. His mission is to help entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and changemakers apply the Atomic Scaling Framework to their organizations and scale to serve. 

Can you describe your book?

Crack the code to supercharge your business. For the last two decades, gaming has outperformed nearly every other industry. Gaming companies produce three times more revenue than Hollywood. A single product boasts twenty billion dollars in revenue. Products crafted by a few routinely reach more than a billion consumers, and their economies outperform most governments. Serial entrepreneur Ludovic Bodin knows the reason for such success. Atomic Scaling holds the key. Although first developed within the gaming industry, the principles of Atomic Scaling can be applied to any organization. Whether you are involved in startups or Fortune 500 companies, discover how you can exponentially increase your customer base, revenue, and profit while lowering overhead. Quit playing games with your bottom line. Instead, explore bold new ways to fulfill your mission and increase your impact.

What are the key takeaways from your book?

Based on lessons from the gaming industry, the key learnings from “Atomic Scaling” focus on achieving exponential growth while keeping the team as small as possible for as long as possible.

It is particularly relevant for tech startups, digital businesses, and entrepreneurs looking to scale in the digital age with minimal resources. 

The book introduces the 3P3R framework as a navigation system consisting of:

– The 3Ps (People, Prediction, Playbook) focus on enhancing organizational capabilities.

– The 3Rs (Revenue, Reach, Retention) detail strategies to optimize the sales funnel.

Exploring each aspect of the 3P3R framework, the discussion extends to how to maintain a small yet highly efficient team, master the art of prediction, align the team, maximize reach and revenue, and unlock the secret to customer retention.

What is the background or origin of the Atomic Scaling method?

Atomic Scaling is inspired by a European or New Zealander mindset, which is about creating something beautiful, nurturing it, and allowing it to illuminate the world. In contrast to the Silicon Valley concept of blitzscaling, with blitzscaling emphasizing rapid and massive growth in terms of size and workforce, Atomic Scaling focuses on exponential growth while keeping the team size as small as possible. 

The Atomic Scaling approach with the 3P3R framework is both a business operating system (3P) and an approach to sales (3R) inspired by best practices from the tech & gaming industry, developed in the era of Artificial Intelligence, where prediction is as crucial as production. 

The principles learned in the video game business, encapsulated in Atomic Scaling, are applicable and valuable across a wide range of industries today​​.

Transitioning from game development to investing in high-potential startups and ultimately venturing into the realm of authorship, what motivated this evolution in your career path?

Four years ago, my journey transitioned from entrepreneurship to dedicating myself as a full-time investor. Embarking on this investment journey, I felt the need to define my investment philosophy clearly. Observing the trend of businesses moving online, especially as we were entering COVID-19,  it struck me that the gaming industry, inherently digital, had been pioneering future business practices. Echoing Gabe Newell, Valve’s founder, I realized that the lessons we learned in the gaming industry will become true to a much broader range of industries.

You’re now taking another exciting turn as an author with your book, “Atomic Scaling.” Can you tell us more?

With the idea that the lessons learned in the gaming industry will become true to a much broader range of industries., I started writting “Atomic Scaling”. It encapsulates my experiences in tech and gaming, my investment and friends turning companies into unicorns, along with the collective wisdom of the gaming industry. It focuses on how small teams can achieve exponential growth. And the book is address to both those willing to leverage lessons from the gaming industry, within the gaming industry, and outside of the gaming industry. 

Your journey from developing games to investing in unicorns and now authoring a book on growth strategies is indeed impressive. What is the core message of “Atomic Scaling” that you find essential for today’s entrepreneurs?

The core principle of “Atomic Scaling” is that small teams equipped with the appropriate approach and mindset can achieve significant impact. The book examines strategies for leveraging technology, effective cooperation, and developing a culture that facilitates rapid growth through a blueprint we created named the 3P3R framework. It involves maximizing available resources with AI and automation and expanding the limits of scalability while maintaining the team’s size as small as possible for as long as possible.

This message seems particularly relevant today amidst the rise of AI, the focus on efficiency, the challenges in the game industry, and the aspiration to build the next decacorn with just a ten-person company. Could you expand on that?

Let’s go back to January 2013. I was a French entrepreneur running a video game company with development teams in Asia and business operations in Silicon Valley. During a fundraising trip, I found myself in Helsinki, Finland, meeting with Ilkka Paananen, CEO of Supercell, for breakfast. His advice was transformative: focus on making our current team more efficient rather than expanding. It took a decade or so to mature, with my investment, my friends turning companies into unicorns, and the lessons learned in the gaming industry worldwide. This led to the development of Atomic Scaling, emphasizing the practical application and the how-to. It’s not just about principles; it’s a paradigm shift in scaling businesses, encouraging smaller, agile teams to foster creativity and trust.

Which gaming companies have influenced Atomic Scaling the most?

Supercell and Valve, along with Gabe Newell, suggested that, as I was early in my investment journey, the applicability of gaming insights across industries was a significant influence. The book contemplates an acronym similar to GAFAM for gaming companies – Riot, Supercell, Tencent, Unity, and Valve (RSTUV). Beyond the RSTUV, many stories and lessons from companies and entrepreneurs, including Discord, EA, ESL, Microsoft, Razer, Rovio, Smilegate, TCGPlayer, Twitch, Voodoo, Yodo1, Zynga, and non-gaming entities like Clickfunnels, Microsoft, Skype, and Spotify, are shared in “Atomic Scaling.”

Ludovic, it’s been enlightening to explore your journey and the philosophy behind “Atomic Scaling.” Thank you for sharing your insights with us today.

Thank you. We’ve just launched the book at GDC, and it’s now available on Amazon. It’s been a privilege to share my journey with you. I hope “Atomic Scaling” serves as a source of inspiration for others looking to navigate their way to success in the tech and gaming sectors and in many other industries, all while maintaining their physical and mental health as they expand their ventures.

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