free virtual worlds
Meet our leadership team
Kaneva is a US based video game development company with a history of producing and distributing 3D, social, massively multiplayer online (MMO) games. KanevaвЂ™s first title called вЂњWorld of KanevaвЂќ nurtured a robust ecosystem consisting of over 3 million registered users, 26,000+ designers that produced 1.7+ million artifacts that were traded inside the game. In late 2016 Kaneva announced and launched production of CasinoLife that brings its 3D virtual world expertise to the social casino gaming genre.
Chris Klaus, CEO
Christopher Klaus is a successful entrepreneur, delivering 3D virtual worlds as the founder and CEO of Kaneva. He is a founder and partner in the CyberLaunch, a startup accelerator focused on helping grow both security and machine learning startups.
He also has a long relationship with Georgia Tech. Today Klaus invigorates the future of technology at Georgia Tech by supporting CREATE-X, a program that gives students a platform to connect with industry leaders and receive the guidance, support-and capital-to launch their own startups. In 2000, Klaus responded to the need to help sustain the technology revolution, and with his pledged donation, Georgia Tech constructed the Christopher W. Klaus Advanced Computing Building, a three-story academic building (over 400,000 square feet of space) that houses a portion of its College of Computing, College of Engineering, and related programs.
Prior to founding Kaneva, Klaus founded and served as CTO of Internet Security Systems Inc. (ISS), a company he created in 1994, took public in 1998, and was acquired by IBM in 2006 for over $1.2 billion. He sits on GeorgiaвЂ™s Film, Video, and Music Advisory Commission. Klaus serves on the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Board of Visitors, the Georgia Game Developers Association (GGDA), the Georgia Tech Foundation, and the Georgia Tech College of Computing. In 2017, Chris was honored with an honorary doctorate by SCAD in recognition of his contributions to the entrepreneurial and creative communities in Georgia.
Minaz Vastani, CTO
Minaz is the Chief Technology Officer, leading the product development, technology vision, engineering and operations of KanevaвЂ™s core platform and infrastructure. Over his career Minaz has worked with large enterprises, mid-size publicly traded companies and startups.
Prior to Kaneva, Minaz was the founding executive and General Manager of AsurionвЂ™s Atlanta Development Center responsible for building a model center of software delivery excellence and built a high quality, multi-tenancy claims and fraud management platform that enabled client launches in the Asia-Pacific markets on a scalable and highly available platform. At Asurion, Minaz also led an innovative risk and fraud management platform team that delivered a modern and scalable platform for advanced risk management services.
Leading up to Kaneva, Minaz served as Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Nextgen Healthcare, a wholly owned subsidiary of Quality Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: QSII) where he led the development of electronic health records management platform for integrated ambulatory and hospital delivery network market. At Nextgen, he also functioned as CIO of the Hospital Services Division delivering cloud based electronic health records management systems for small to mid-size hospitals.
Minaz joined Cbeyond (NASDAQ:CBEY, acquired by Birch in 2014) shortly after its inception as venture capital backed startup and over 11 years contributed to CbeyondвЂ™s evolution from a startup to a thriving publicly traded entity providing telecommunications and cloud services to small and medium businesses. As Vice President of Information Technology, Minaz led various aspects of IT from planning, strategy, systems development, infrastructure, IT and datacenter operations.
Prior to joining Cbeyond, Minaz worked for Verizon (NYSE:VZ). At Verizon he was responsible for developing online customer self-service channels for Verizon’s domestic and international subsidiaries. Prior to Verizon he worked at FedExвЂ™s STAR Center вЂ“ a research arm of FedEx focused on delivering innovative software solutions to the enterprise. Minaz holds a B.S and M.S. in computer engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.
Jason Frank, Product Marketing
Jason Frank is spearheading all product marketing, strategy, communications, and analytics activities for Kaneva and their premier social Poker and Casino products. Before joining Kaneva, Jason enjoyed an extensive career working with over a dozen private and publicly traded companies throughout the world including Scientific Games, Seminole Hard Rock, Rush Street Interactive, Borgata Hotel and Casino, Resorts Hotel Casino, Baha Mar and others. JasonвЂ™s specific expertise is derived from managing regulated online gambling operations throughout the EU, introducing and managing regulated online gaming products in portions of the US and Caribbean, and developing social freemium gaming products both US and globally. Jason has been recognized for his leadership and hands on contributions to product designs, competitive analysis, game economies, acquisition, retention and loyalty programs, business intelligence, communication strategy and analytics contributions that spurred growth, consumer satisfaction, and financial value to many successful products. Jason holds B.S. degrees in Genetics and Biology, a B.A. in Psychology and an MBA from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
Timothy Ryan, Development Director
Timothy is a veteran in the casino and entertainment software industry as a producer, designer and programmer. At Kaneva he oversees development of VR CasinoLife. He has shepherded the team as it transitioned to a new platform and the VR Casino Life vision. He promotes best practices in project management, engineering and software design. Prior to joining Kaneva, Timothy was Executive Producer at AGS, formerly Amaya and Cadillac Jack, where he produced and managed 100+ Class 3, Class 2, VLT, mobile and online video slot games. Timothy also produced and designed desktop and console games for Midway, Lucas Arts, THQ, HopeLab, Sony, Microprose, 3DO and ASCII, most notably Re-Mission, Frequency, and MechCommander. His most noteworthy slot titles include Fu Cat, Gold Dragon Red Dragon, Fire Bull, Going Gnome, Samba Queen, Dragons Lair, and Goddess of the Woods. Timothy is a regular contributor to the game industry site Gamasutra and is an inventor with multiple patents in slot game design. His game Frequency, the first online game for the Playstation 2, was honored with the coveted BAFTA award in 2001.
William Harrison, Product Management
Billy Harrison is the Director of Product Management and takes the role of вЂњvoice of the consumerвЂќ on a daily basis. He has been at Kaneva for 7 years and has overseen the majority of features for various products, that now include KanevaвЂ™s consumer Casino titles. BillyвЂ™s daily viewpoints always come from research, metrics, qualitative research and what competitors are doing, to give customers what they want and need in this fast growing space.
BillyвЂ™s career has been entirely focused in the consumer software, games and apps space. His primary focus is first and foremost on customer acquisition and retention. Getting more customers to play or use products and determining ways to keep them for as long as possible, is how Billy has created many successful experiences.
Prior to working at Kaneva, Billy conceptualized and managed various top selling apps at EarthLink, other Cable companies, LeapFrog Toys, and Knowledge Adventure, which include various popular titles for JumpStart, Math Blaster, Fisher Price, as well as many titles for Mattel and Disney. Billy has also designed many products in the bicycle industry and was a national champion while attending Cal State San Marcos.