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2006 Asper Award for Global Entrepreneurship

Firaxis Games Receives Entrepreneurship Award at Brandeis

September 12, 2006

The 2006 Asper Award for Global Entrepreneurship was given to the leaders of Firaxis Games - Jeffrey Briggs, Sid Meier and Jonathan Plutzik '76. The award honors their outstanding success in the global marketplace through development of creative products that span geographic and cultural boundaries, integration of technology, marketing and business strategy, uncommon attention to detail and execution, and exemplary corporate citizenship.

This symposium is organized by the The Asper Center.

About the Firaxis Team
Founded in 1996, Firaxis Games is a world renowned game development studio with an unwavering mission to "build games that stand the test of time". Named after an orchestral work composed by company founder and President Jeff Briggs, "Firaxis" is a fusion of "fiery" and "axis", communicating the company's dynamic process of game development and creation of visionary products. The company and its leaders exemplify the spirit of entrepreneurship through it merging of business, technology and creativity.

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Guest Speakers

Sid Meier, Creative Director and Partner
Sid Meier's career that places him among the great creative visionaries of our time. Recognized around the world as the "Father of Computer Gaming," Sid has been honored with virtually every award in the industry. Sid's legacy IP such as F-19, Sid Meier's Civilization, Railroad Tycoon, and Sid Meier's Pirates!, are revered as some of the greatest games ever made.

As Director of Creative Development at Firaxis, Sid continues to deliver the most heralded gameplay on the planet. He is often recognized by industry experts such as PC Gamer, Computer Gaming World, GameSpot, and GameSpy as one of the industry's "Game Gods." With the support of the dynamic team at Firaxis, Sid continues to deliver blockbuster hits like Sid Meier's Gettysburg!, Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, Sid Meier's Civilization III, Sid Meier's Pirates, and the just released, Sid Meier's Civilization IV which is getting rave reviews worldwide.


Jeffery Briggs
Founder, President, and Partner
Jeff Brigg's career in game-making started in 1984 at West End Games in New York City. In 1988, he joined Sid Meier at MicroProse, where they began an enduring creative partnership that has produced some of the most successful titles of all time, including multiple versions of the original Pirates!, F-19, Sid Meier's Civilization II, Sid Meier's Colonization, F-117A Stealth Fighter, and their brainchild CPU Bach, for which they hold a shared patent. Sid Meier's Civilization III, which Jeff produced and co-designed with Soren Johnson, has sold over three million copies alone. Jeff wrote the music for CIV IV, which has already sold over one million copies since its release in October. 2005.

Jeff holds a doctorate in Music Composition and Theory from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, a Master of Music from Memphis University, and a Bachelor of Science from the Eastman School of Music. Jeff was honored by SmartCEO Magazine as the CEO of the Year in 2004, and was Ernst and Young's Maryland Technology Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003.


Jonathan Plutzik '76, Chairman and Partner
Jonathan Plutzik retired as Chairman of Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB), in 2003, after a 25 year career. His responsibilities included oversight for all of the firm's work with U. S. state and local governments, international privatization initiatives, investment banking activities in Washington, DC and global financial services. Jonathan established CSFB's global leadership in demutualization, a wholesale transformation in corporate governance for financial services companies and spearheaded some of the Firm's most significant transactions: the $3.3 billion IPO and demutualization of AMP, Australia's largest insurer, the $2.5 billion IPO and demutualization of Manulife Financial Corporation and the $5.2 billion IPO demutualization of MetLife.

As Chairman of Firaxis for five years, Jonathan provided critical business acumen and guidance in securing Firaxis' financial position as a one of the world's leading independent game developers, and then played a key role in its transition to wholly owned subsidiary of Take 2 Interactive, in 2005.

Moderator
Walter Mossberg '69, Principal Technology Columnist, The Wall Street Journal
Walt Mossberg '69 is the author and creator of the weekly Personal Technology column in The Wall Street Journal, which has appeared every Thursday since 1991.

Newsweek magazine calls Mr. Mossberg "the most powerful arbiter of consumer tastes in the computer world today." Time magazine calls him "the most influential computer journalist." And Rolling Stone calls him "the most powerful columnist in technology."

In addition to Personal Technology, Mr. Mossberg also writes two other weekly columns in the Journal. In Mossberg's Mailbox, he answers readers' questions. In The Mossberg Solution, he compares and contrasts consumer electronic gadgets. He is also a contributing editor of Smart Money, the Journal's monthly magazine, where he writes a column called The Mossberg Report.

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