TheGamingEconomy’s Daily Digest brings you the prevalent business stories in gaming. In today’s news: Wildlife Studios raises USD$120m (£91.7m); dMY Technology Group II SPAC in USD$240m (£183m) IPO; and PUBG Corporation invests USD$10m (£7.6m) in 1Up Ventures.
Wildlife Studios raises USD$120m (£91.7m)
Brazilian mobile game developer-publisher Wildlife Studios has announced that it has raised USD$120m (£91.7m) in Series B funding led by Vulcan Capital, with a supporting contribution from Human Capital. The round values the Sao Paulo-based firm at USD$3bn (£2.3bn), and follows its USD$60m (£46m) Series A tranche led by Benchmark Capital completed in December last year. The funding will be used by Wildlife Studios to continue its organic growth, further engineering capabilities on its proprietary game development engine, and for recruitment. Wildlife Studios has purportedly attracted over 100 million monthly users across its portfolio, which spans multiple mobile genres including hyper-casual, with its recently-launched Tennis Clash and Zooba titles having generated two billion downloads.
Commenting on the investment, Victor Lazarte, co-founder and CEO of Wildlife, wrote, “We will continue to work to attract the world’s best game designers. We have an entrepreneurial DNA and following this new investment round, we want to become a platform for the world’s best game developers, allowing them to create their dream games. We will offer all the infrastructure these developers need to see their games achieve much more success here than elsewhere.”
dMY Technology Group II in USD$240m (£183m) IPO
dMY Technology Group, Inc. II, a special purpose acquisition corporation (SPAC) launched by former Glu Mobile CEO Niccolo De Masi, is aiming to raise USD$240m (£183m) through its IPO on the New York Stock Exchange under the DMYD.U ticker, with the funds to be used to acquire a video games company valued between USD$1bn (£764m) and USD$3bn (£2.3bn). The move comes after De Masi’s first dMY Technology Group vehicle merged with online gambling company Rush Street Interactive. While De Masi is prioritising a video games firm, opportunities in wider mobile consumer software including e-commerce, dating, and health, have also been mooted. The IPO for dMY Technology Group, Inc. II is expected to close tomorrow (Tuesday 18th August).
Speaking to VentureBeat, De Masi commented, “I jokingly say that if you don’t do two IPOs in a year, then you’re just not trying, right? We think the public option can be seen in a new light. Public markets have not seen a lot of enthusiasm from early-stage companies. We are an option now that everyone is willing to discuss.”
PUBG Corporation invests USD$10m (£7.6m) in 1Up Ventures
Krafton Game Union subsidiary PUBG Corporation has announced that it has invested USD$10m (£7.6m) in US venture capital firm 1Up Ventures. The investment marks the first funding for 1Up, founded in 2019 by former Microsoft executive Ed Fries, which specialises in funding independent video game developers. 1Up Ventures’ current portfolio includes Playable Worlds, Tiny Rebel Games, Double Loop Games, and Bit Fry Game Studios, with the latter two studios receiving a combined USD$6m (£4.6m) in February this year.
PubG Corporation CEO Chang Han Kim commented, “With our investment in 1Up Ventures, PUBG Corporation is looking to foster the next generation of video game developers around the world. A vibrant and diverse indie community benefits the entire industry. PUBG grew from a spirit of independence and collaboration, so we are proud to support a fund like 1Up Ventures to help create a sustainable path and environment for the industry-changing games and developers of tomorrow.”