Esports investment in May was led by Fnatic raising $17m. There were various mergers and acquisitions, including Enthusiast Gaming’s acquisition of both Icy Veins and Tabwire, as well as two Letters of Intent (LOI) signed by other companies set to make acquisitions of their own.
Each month, ESI collates the period’s significant esports investment news. Here are the key stories from May 2021. To read more about a story below, click the link in the corresponding title.
English professional footballer Dominic Calvert-Lewin has been made a brand ambassador of esports startup Semper Fortis Esports PLC.
“Esports has been on my radar for quite a while now and I am excited to take my first steps into the space with Semper Fortis,” Calvert-Lewin said in a release.
London-based esports organisation Fnatic announced in May that it had raised $17m (~£12m) in a new investment round led by Japanese conglomerate Marubeni Corporation.
The investment includes a strategic partnership between the two organisations that will support Fnatic’s expansion into the Japanese and Asia-Pacific esports markets.
Esports conglomerate Enthusiast Gaming acquired two companies in May. The first to be announced was Vedatsis SAS, the owner of strategy guide platform Icy Veins, for €7m (~£6.01m). The deal was first announced in March this year.
The second was data platform Tabwire LLC for $11m (~£7.81m). This acquisition will help Enthusiast towards its goal of developing a subscription-based social network for gamers (code-named Project GG).
Entertainment and technology company ESE Entertainment Inc. (ESE) has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire Irish esports infrastructure company Auto Simulation Ltd — the parent company of Digital Motorsports.
“Our shared vision of becoming the number one global brand for esports in the motorsports industry was paramount in coming together to sign the LOI,” ESE CEO Konrad Wasiela said on ESE’s agreement with Digital Motorsports.
Private equity company Supernova Capital has announced the acquisition of Player1 Events from UK-based gaming retailer GAME.
Supernova now owns the rights to Insomnia Gaming Festival, one of the UK’s most popular in-person gaming events. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.
Warsaw-based startup StreamCards has raised approximately $530,000 (~£375,500) from its private investment round.
StreamCards was incubated by Tar Heel Capital Pathfinder, a venture building and venture capital fund which has supported other projects such as GRID Esports, Gamivo, and Skinwallet.
Intema Solutions has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire Livestream Gaming Ltd, owner of esports betting platform LOOT.BET.
The transaction will see Intema acquire all of the issued and outstanding Livestream securities for $14.75m (~£10.6m).
North American esports organisation Beastcoast closed its pre-seed funding round at $2.5m (~£1.8m) in early May.
Investors included Andover Ventures, Elevate Ventures and Techstars, alongside angel investors Steven Temares (formerly of Bed Bath & Beyond) and Scott Dorsey, a Managing Partner at High Alpha Ventures.
Resolve Esports has announced the acquisition of fellow UK org Barrage Esports.
As a result of the acquisition and subsequent merger, Resolve will take over all of Barrage’s esports and business operations.