weekly-16

GGP Gaming Weekly – Week 16

M&A and Capital Raising

LionTree acted as an Underwriter on AppLovin's IPO (link to prospectus)

  • AppLovin’s mission is to grow the Mobile app ecosystem by enabling the success of Mobile app developers
  • AppLovin priced 22.5M primary shares in its IPO at $80/share, raising $1.75B in primary capital
  • Selling stockholder KKR sold an additional 2.5M shares in the IPO and will retain ~30% of the outstanding shares on a pro forma basis
  • AppLovin will start as a public company with $2.2B in cash on its balance sheet with a debt to 2020 Adj. EBITDA ratio of 5.1x

Epic Games raises $1B for long-term metaverse plans, with $200M from Sony (link)

  • Epic Games has raised $1B at a valuation of $28.7B, including a $200M strategic investment from Sony with participation from Baillie Gifford, Fidelity, GIC, T. Rowe, BlackRock, KKR, and Franklin among others
  • The funding will be used to support future growth opportunities
  • “We are grateful to our new and existing investors who support our vision for Epic and the Metaverse,” said Epic CEO, Tim Sweeney, “Their investment will help accelerate our work around building connected social experiences in Fortnite, Rocket League, and Fall Guys, while empowering game developers and creators with Unreal Engine, Epic Online Services, and the Epic Games Store.”

Generation Esports raises $10.8M to grow student esports leagues (link)

  • Altos Ventures led Generation Esports $10.8M round with additional participation from FJ Labs
  • The Company will use the funding to support Generation Esports’ multiple community and student esports initiatives, including the High School Esports League (HSEL)
  • Sponsors Asus, Intel, and the Army National Guard have additionally pledged to support Generation Esports and its leagues in 2021 and beyond
  • The Company is dedicated to being an entry point for young gamers to pursue a career in the professional tech or game industry by instilling values which include fair play, inclusivity, and respect

Jambox Games raises $1.1M to publish games by developers in India and Southeast Asia (link)

  • Jambox Games, a Singapore-based startup, has launched a game publishing platform to help indie developers in India and Southeast Asia to publish their mobile games
  • The Company aims to offer a toolkit that integrates analytics, attribution, user acquisition, and monetization
  • Jambox is looking to launch the platform in Vietnam, India and Indonesia initially before scaling this to Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines

LEGO Ventures invests in learning platform Area9 Lyceum (link)

  • Adaptive learning platform developer Area9 Lyceum has received a strategic investment from LEGO Ventures
  • LEGO Ventures managing director Jamie Beaumont will join the Area9 board of directors
  • "Not only is the LEGO Brand among the world's most respected brands, but its commitment to learning through play is directly in line with our vision for the future of learning,” said Area9 Lyceum chairman and CEO Ulrik Juul Christensen, M.D.

ByteDance acquires Chinese developer C4games (link)

  • ByteDance, owner of TikTok, has further invested into the games market by acquiring Chinese developer C4games
  • The Company previously acquired Mobile game developer Moonton in March 2021, launched a mobile games studio, and established an in-house publishing arm

Others

Epic Games launches early access for MetaHuman Creator tool to make realistic animated people (link)

  • Epic Games unveiled the tool in February, and it had an overwhelming response from people who tried it and created two MetaHuman sample characters with it
  • Early access users will be able to use it in Unreal Engine, or for further editing in a DCC application
  • Epic Games is also providing over 50 ready-made MetaHumans for download and use in projects
  • MetaHuman Creator combines technology from 3Lateral and Cubic Motion – both now part of Epic Games – and makes it widely accessible

 

Nintendo to focus on creating new IPs and new experiences (link)

  • The Japanese firm is behind longstanding franchises such as The Legend of Zelda, Mario, Fire Emblem and Pokémon is focusing on creating new original IPs
  • Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa said "I am looking at and studying various forms of entertainment. In the future, we will focus on creating new game series as well as long-sellers such as Mario and Zelda."

Epic teams with Sony to bring Aloy to Fortnite (link)

  • Epic Games has further established its partnership with Sony, adding PlayStation icon Aloy, the main protagonist from Horizon Zero Dawn, into Fortnite
  • Previously, Kratos, from God of War, was added to Fortnite

Rovio launches midcore strategy game Darkfire Heroes (link)

  • Darkfire Heroes features more than 75 heroes from six different factions as players assemble teams, build strategies, and lead their squads against all manner of monsters
  • The game began development under Darkfire Games until the studio was acquired by Rovio in June 2020
  • The target audience for Darkfire Heroes is mid-core mobile players between the ages of 16 to 44 years old

Gaming Public Multiples

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