Immortals raise $26m after departing Call of Duty League - Dexerto
Business

Immortals raise $26m after departing Call of Duty League

Published: 6/Nov/2020 18:15 Updated: 6/Nov/2020 18:16

by Adam Fitch

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Immortals Gaming Club have raised $26 million in Series B-1 funding following the sale of their Call of Duty League franchise.

The company owns and operates Immortals, Brazilian brand MIBR, Overwatch League franchise Los Angeles Valiant, and Counter-Strike platform Gamers Club.

The investment was raised to “fuel ongoing growth of the company’s core,” which is mainly their team brands.

Meg Whitman, a board member and existing investor, led the funding round. She previously served as the CEO of eBay, Quibi, and Hewlett Packard (HP) Enterprise.

MIBR's new CSGO roster with vsm, lucas1, kng, leo_drunky, and tnk
MIBR
MIBR just signed a fresh new CS:GO roster.

Immortals Gaming Club just sold one of their flagship brands, OpTic Gaming Los Angeles. The Call of Duty League franchise slot has been acquired by 100 Thieves and rebranded as the Los Angeles Thieves, while the OpTic brand is expected to now be owned by Hector ‘H3CZ’ Rodriguez.

“IGC is focused on investing aggressively in growth in competitive gaming, inclusive of our platform, non-team assets such as Gamers Club, and our core team brands Immortals and MIBR,” said Ari Segal, CEO of Immortals Gaming Club.

“We’ve enjoyed strong growth in our non-team asset portfolio and are excited to leverage a strong balance sheet and focus our energy, time, capital, and other resources on these aspects of the business, as well as current and future esports team assets that authentically serve and deliver for gaming communities around the world.”

LA Thieves
LA Thieves
SlasheR, Kuavo, and Muddawg return to 100 Thieves as members of LA Thieves.

Immortals Gaming Club acquired the OpTic Gaming brand when they purchased Infinite Esports & Entertainment in June 2019.

They also obtained Overwatch League brand Houston Outlaws, which was later sold to Beasley Media Group.

On selling their Call of Duty League slot to 100 Thieves, IGC board member Steve Cohen said: “IGC’s vertical integration and multi-pronged approach to brand building affords us the ability to repeatedly check our performance and impact in the market in real time.”

Business

Queens Gaming Collective CEO explains need for women-led organization

Published: 17/Nov/2020 12:59

by Adam Fitch

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Queens Gaming Collective, a gaming lifestyle company led by women, has launched with $1.5m in investment.

Founded and operated by women, the collective has assembled to amplify accessibility and opportunities for their content creators, streamers, and competitors so they can “build equitable and profitable careers in gaming.”

Queens Gaming Collective launched to “level the playing field in a crowded, competitive, and male-dominated industry” and have a roster of prominent figures to boot. Each have ownership in the brand and will be given tools and guidance to “unlock economic upside.”

The collective initially houses musical acts CRAY, Sharlene, Coco and Breezy, Erica Nagashima, Sunzibae, bunnymightgameu; content creators AvaGG, Kiera Please, demisux, Bloody, Kayla Delancey, BlackKrystel, xmiramira, SavEdgeDoll, HelloIAmKate; influencer Carrington Durham; cosplayer Maid of Might; and WNBA champion Alexis Jones.

Queens AvaGG KieraPlease
Queens
Queens Gaming Collective members Kiera Please (left) and AvaGG (right).

The aforementioned members will create collaborative content and activations for platforms owned by Queens Gaming Collective. They’re also joined by an ambassador network, dubbed the Queens Court, that includes former NBA star Baron Davis and media figure Karen Civil.

Dexerto asked CEO and co-founder Alisa Jacobs why it was important for Queens Gaming Collective to exist. “Because it is wildly shocking that it didn’t exist. Nearly half of the world’s gamers are women,” she said. “Nonetheless, through the lens of representation, especially in streaming, where are all the women? For every Pokimane or Valkyrae, there are a dozen men — Ninja, Shroud, Myth, TimTheTatman, Dr. Disrespect, Dr. Lupo, etc.

“Our Queens have built their own dedicated, engaged audiences, but all want and deserve additional support to elevate and expand within the industry. This is where we come in. We are an arsenal. We provide the professional weaponry required for battle, including heavy artillery like meaningful resources, platform and opportunities. While there is plenty of white space to develop and celebrate these gamers, it takes a village. There is a more resounding, industry-wide issue that we are adamant to address. It’s an immediate call to action for all of us.”

In recent times, esports has seen more investment placed in diversity and inclusivity with Gen.G partnering with dating app Bumble to scout and house all-female teams, Cloud9 signing a female Valorant roster, and Dignitas launching their ‘FE’ platform for women in gaming. As Jacobs explained, this is a start but the cause isn’t over just yet.

Cloud9 White Valorant
Cloud9
Cloud9 announced the first all-female Valorant roster on October 25.

“We love seeing top-tier esports organizations putting action behind their words, and are sincerely rooting for each team and initiative,” she said. “It sets the precedent. However, there is still a lot of work to be done here. We’re just scratching the surface when it comes to broader areas to tackle in esports and gaming. This is why we are so purposeful in selecting our Queens. Our inaugural class, as well as our investors, executives, staff, and vendors, for that matter, are diverse in terms of background, gender, race, talent and thought.”

The collective have launched with support from investors and endemic gaming companies alike. Razer have joined the company as a partner, providing them with peripherals like mice, keyboards, and headsets to use when creating content.

BITKRAFT Ventures, a firm launched by ESL and G2 Esports co-founder Jens Hilgers, led the investment in the company. Other contributors include Muse Capital founding partners Assia Grazioli-Venier and Rachel Springate, former MTV executive Amy Finnerty, Kappa USA president Dre Heyes, Sugarfina co-founder Rosie O’Neill, and seven other businesswomen.

“Our seed capital is going into critical resources necessary to bring Queens to market and foster our roster’s long-term growth,” Jacobs said of such support. “Razer will provide our talent with the peripherals they need to better create content, and connect with other Queens and their respective audiences.”

With the ethos and approach of Queens being made clear from the get-go, Dexerto asked their CEO as to the ultimate ambition behind the venture.

“Our primary goal is to help create and equalize opportunities for women in gaming and gaming culture,” she answered. “We’ll do that by providing our Queens increased access, management, guidance, and resources they need to be successful. Collectively, all of these can help empower meaningful personal brands and careers, and affect change. We seek to inspire the next generation of culture-makers and young women in gaming.”

Queens Gaming Collective will host a celebratory launch stream on December 5, with team members being joined by the Queens Court on Twitch.