In many startups, the early story tends to either be forgotten or glorified, so I decided to write this blog post early on before I forgot the details.
The story of starting our mobile gaming company PinchPoint is one of fortune. We have been very lucky because many many important events leading to the company’s creation were by complete chance. Truly a series of fortunate events.
#1: A Push from a friend
The first fortunate event was that at about the same time, both Tareq Doufish (now co-founder) and I started to think about focusing on building games. We were lucky that Ammar Tazami (now co-founder), who had helped us build our previous games, made Tareq and me sit together to think about how to work together to start something new.
#2: Design talent inspired by a game about sperm
The second fortunate event with perfect timing happened when Basel Nasr (who was in the USA and now co-founder) contacted me shortly after meeting with Tareq and Ammar asking about the situation in Palestine. I remember seeing his Facebook message just a week after our first meeting to start PinchPoint. Basel said he was finishing his MFA in Animation and that he wanted to come back to Palestine. We agreed to a Skype call and I told him about our new venture.
On that call, he asked what our first game would be about. I hesitated, “it’s about the journey of the sperm.” There was a pause on the line before I heard, “I’m in.”
PinchPoint landed its brilliant artwork designer.
#3: Starting to think like a company
The third fortunate event was the launch of FastForward, the first startup accelerator in Palestine. We applied and were accepted into the pre-acceleration program, which was amazing. The most important thing we learned was how to think about our venture as a company, not as a game.
It was also during this time that we named the company. One day at the gym, we saw a poorly written sign in front of a steep ledge, “Caution, Pinch point.” In that moment, it hit us that our venture was all about building games that are on the edge. The name stuck.
#4: Meeting an investor
Although we decided not to participate in FastForward’s acceleration program, it did lead to us meeting Saed Nashef from Sadara Ventures, Palestine’s first tech-focused venture capital fund. We got to know each other and discussed PinchPoint’s vision, which later led to our first investment.
Many might say these events were not about luck but rather the way things normally progress. I prefer to think that luck was on our side and that it will continue to remain on our side, because we need it!