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How to Build a $100M Global Business with Wilfrid Obeng Co-Founder of AudioMob

By Hanaa Yousof 

Without even knowing about AudioMob — you know about AudioMob. 

For the 3B+ gamers globally, it’s safe to assume we are collectively familiar with in-game advertisements. For mobile-gamers, the intrusive video advertisement after a level is especially infamous, dampening the flow and quality of gaming on mobile platforms which have otherwise been streamlined to offer an experience that retains the scale of play on larger devices. But, if you’ve noticed in any capacity that these video advertisements have been replaced by audio advertisements overlaid as you play a level through without interruption — then, you know about AudioMob.

Here at Blocks2Bags, we’re always looking for entrepreneurs who are pushing the boundaries to address gaps in the market in creative ways; this week’s guest, Wilfrid Obeng, is no different. An ex-Google engineer turned co-founder of AudioMob alongside Christian Facey, their number-one audio discovery platform is “driven by a goal to help advertisers better reach their consumers and help game developers better monetise their games. […] by allowing users to programmatically insert audio ads into mobile games”

The niche approach to a seemingly small problem has been incredibly lucrative, with the 2020 established company valued at over $100M,  And beyond just the literal proof of success, it’s indicative of systemic boundary-pushing, with the low proportion of Black founders in the industry meaning breaking-in comes with several challenges. With AudioMob’s expansion to a global market, opening offices in Abu Dhabi and New York, the venture only seems to be going up.

Sit down with us this week as we trace Wilfrid’s journey from Blocks2Bags — and what foundership means in today’s globalised landscape.


  1. Technology has carved equal ground; take a chance — Entrepreneurship as a notion can appear immediately riddled with barriers; but with digitalisation as a means to connect for anybody and everybody, think about the way these instantly accessible resources are something you can harness.

  2. Vision requires structure — Having an idea is great, but you can’t simply start there. Building something to last requires patience, a plan, and knowledge of what it even is you’d like to cultivate. Think anything from having the data to back up potential challenges in your entrepreneurial venture, to knowing why you want to take your business to a certain region.

  3. Why case studies matter — Wilfrid’s top hack for growing your company? Case studies. Maybe not what comes to mind upon initial consideration, but a definite necessity to move past blocks in the road.

  4. Going global is more than going global — Taking your business abroad is a great idea in theory, but what does internationalisation really mean? Consider more than just the initial appeal of a location — what benefits does it offer you that can mean permanency and sustained results for your entrepreneurial venture. 

  5. Talk less, ask more — If you’ve tuned into Blocks2Bags before and the word ‘networking’ isn’t permanently ingrained into your mind — you haven’t stuck around for long enough. A unanimous point of importance across the various entrepreneurs we’ve sat down with, connecting with others can be the springboard that takes you to the next level. 


The most mainstream advice as to taking the path to entrepreneurship cannot and will not necessarily cover it all; but it can especially fall flat as to guidance on entering spaces wherein you are repeatedly confronted by the knowledge that your background doesn’t necessarily align with the ‘typical’ entrepreneur. What is conventional entrepreneurship? Perhaps what comes to mind is whiteness, is connections, is an already established path carved for you generationally — is ease in navigating a space that ultimately requires sacrifice at a large scale. 

Bearing these difficulties in mind — ‘is today a golden age for diverse founders?’ — was a question our Blocks2Bags hosts posed to Wilfrid. He took a more optimistic spin on the issue:

“Technology has become a great equaliser”, he said. “As long as you have a phone, you can literally build a business”.

And it’s true; whether its platforms such as TikTok whose algorithm has propelled many individuals globally to fame, or been the launchpad for small businesses to go instantaneously viral, there is opportunity to be found in leaving ‘convention’ on the backbench and enmeshing yourself in spaces which thrive on difference. It’s easier said than done; in spite of AudioMob’s incredible success, Wilfrid is no stranger to the knowledge of the low proportion of Black founders in the industry, especially ones who have built legacies to the tune of $100M. But nonetheless, whether it's in joining our Blocks2Bags community and our events like Bag Drop, or simply seeing founders from diverse backgrounds, harnessing technology and taking chances that are immediately available to you is a worthwhile venture. 

Recognising all of the above — how do you retain success and maintain consistency once you’ve ventured into your entrepreneurial journey? Previously working with Google as an engineer, Wilfrid mentioned a comment that stuck from his manager before ever conceptualising the path AudioMob would go on to take:

“One day you’ll see how hard it is to manage people”, he said, something that Wilfrid reflected on in turning to managing individuals himself.

For this reason, it's been withdrawing from set expectations that has formed a stable framework for his day-today in the office; discussing the importance of introspection, Wilfrid mentioned platforms like Lumina Spark to understand his communication style. Here, beyond the typical responsibilities of an entrepreneur, maintaining a good workflow can also rely on your relationships with other employees, and understanding how you can balance your communication style with theirs is incredibly important. Alongside this, Wilfrid also highlighted balance as a core concept in getting used to the stark difference of entrepreneurship to a regular 9-5, wherein you could otherwise quickly crumble in the ‘real-world’.


What does it mean to take your business worldwide? Perhaps what immediately comes to mind is the direct view; be it the climate of the region, or your perceptions of the cultural landscape, it’s not unusual to have these be the first associations that make your decision as to where you believe lies a worthwhile place to ‘go global’, as it were.

However, Wilfrid stressed that these are generally the least indicative factors of a successful path to internationalisation as an entrepreneur. For him, even considering globalisation came unexpectedly; taking a chance to network with a connection he’d previously made in a Founders of the Future programme, while on holiday in the UAE, propelled him onto a path of internationalisation.

“When I say shout louder, you have to put yourself out there […] you have to make yourself uncomfortable”, he said of networking without any expectations of what could come out of it.

Connecting to one person meant having access to an even wider network of individuals with similar entrepreneurial pursuits and vested interest in startups in the UAE, many of whom further familiarised Wilfrid with the way that taking his business global could eventually mean liaising with government-based companies to access subsidies, office space, and more, what with the region’s vision of becoming a creative hub — directly aligning with the niche, gaming-based approach of AudioMob.

“When you start to see a lot of movement one way”, Wilfrid said of seeing others moving abroad and wanting to follow a similar path, “Talk less, and ask more questions”.

And the results speak for themselves; with the business of gaming 3B+ people deep, and a fully globalised venture, Wilfrid found that taking that leap of faith was more than necessary to expand AudioMob. Our Blocks2Bags hosts and Wilfrid also discussed the way that internationalisation often relied on replacing your immediate perceptions with an approach that is conscious of cultural differences, mentioning things such as the inability to build a company with the same ease that is offered in the UK.

“I’ve seen a lot of people be so arrogant so as to think that this way is the right way and I’m only gonna do business this way, and I’m gonna ignore all of the other cultural nuances”, said Wilfrid. “I think it’s a recipe for disaster.”


If you’ve tuned into Blocks2Bags before, you know that we like to offer you a practical framework to take away from our episodes; passive listening alone isn’t what takes you to the bag. With Wilfrid, we tackled the dilemma of raising $14M at a $100M valuation — and where you can begin to level up as an entrepreneur:

  1. MENTALITY — Reflecting on his council-estate upbringing, Wilfrid honed in on the way a shift in mindset and mentality shift was incredibly core in actually being able to see an entrepreneurial venture through, despite not growing up with connections or guidance. Powering your ideas with confidence, and harnessing this confidence through every step of the way is key here; as opposed to looking at people investing in your work as a favour, recognise your value as a visionary, and establish concrete plans and structures that reflect the faith you have in your work. And alongside confidence, anticipating challenges through being data driven and coherent means not giving up when the first hurdle comes — because it always does.

  1. PRESENTATION — There is a reason that numerous successful entrepreneurs are also lauded public speakers; the ability to articulate yourself well can often speak to the quality of your work, and again, aid in dealing with challenges. Rather than becoming flustered, coming across with assuredness, such as stating you will “get back to an issue”, and not that “[you] don’t know”, can make a bigger difference than is immediately obvious. 

  1. EXPERIENCE — Experience can come through many ways; but not everyone can cultivate credibility out of their experiences. Here is where really breaking down your experiences comes in handy; understanding what you learned, and why it has led you to where you are can allow you access to credibility, often in spite of your background, to convince investors that your venture is worth taking part in. 

  1. GLOBALISATION — A final piece to the puzzle, going global is something we’ve already tackled at length. But it remains a key part of the framework; learning from the previous steps to build plans for yourself, and articulate yourself confidently can mean taking the global leap. Ultimately, high-value investments can lie beyond borders.


Ever had any burning questions for an entrepreneur who’s taken their venture to new heights? While you’ll have to tap into the full episode to get the details, here’s our quickfire recap of Wilfrid’s insights into everything entrepreneurship and the tech space.

Sebuh Mesfin: What’s your favourite tech tool?

Wilfrid Obeng: Slack, for its WhatsApp-esque offerings, and editing capabilities in comparison with the less-streamlined system of emails.

Sebuh Mesfin: What’s your number one personal productivity hack?

Wilfrid Obeng: Scheduling emails beforehand, and completing work on flights for much-needed quiet

Sebuh Mesfin: What is your number one company growth hack?

Wilfrid Obeng: Case Studies — “even if you have to do something for free to prove the value, get the case study” 

Sebuh Mesfin: Your favourite or most valuable podcast? 

Wilfrid Obeng: Not one favourite podcast — usually dives in-and-out from different ones and especially hip-hop podcasts.

Sebuh Mesfin: What is a thought or framework that you want people to take with them in 2024?

Wilfrid Obeng: Always work smart, not hard. Learn from the people around you, ask people in your network questions and use their decks; cut corners in your work without it being at the expense of quality in your product.


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