London, UK-based mobile games studio Space Ape Games, which was founded in 2012 by gaming and tech startup vets like John Earner (ex-Playfish, PlayStation) and Toby Moore (ex-Mind Candy), has closed a $7 million round of funding to kick off a recruitment blitz.

The fresh cash comes from Northzone, Accel Partners, Initial Capital and Connect Ventures, at a time when the gaming studio is giving a first look at its upcoming second game, Rival Kingdoms: Age of Ruin.

Its first game, which put Space Ape on the map, was Samurai Siege. According to the company, that title has single-handedly made the company profitable already, with over $20 million in aggregate revenue and 10 million downloads to date.

But, as many studios that came (and went) before it, pumping out one hit game doesn’t guarantee successful follow-ups, so it remains to be seen whether Space Ape will be able to repeat that trick.

It won’t be for lack of trying: the capital injection, which brings the startup’s total funding to $11 million, will be used primarily to accelerate hiring plans, with plans to grow the Space Ape team with up to 30-40 hires in the next six months.

In addition, previous board observer Jeppe Zink of Northzone will join the Space Ape board, whilst former Zynga and Electronic Arts EVP Barry Cottle will take up an advisory role. David Gardner OBE, an EA veteran and former CEO of Atari, is joining the board in an advisory capacity.

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