GAME Digital plc, today announced that it has acquired Multiplay (UK) Limited which is a community-based games company focused on live events, online gaming services and eSports.
GAME’s acquisition of Multiplay will create a unique platform to expand significantly the Group’s community-events and eSports programme and drive deeper interaction with gamers. In addition, the acquisition opens up new opportunities for GAME to increase its presence in the digital PC games market, supporting the Group’s dual ambitions to grow the size of its gaming communities and to offer customers new products, services and gaming experiences.
Multiplay was established in 1997 and has organised over 150 gaming events in the UK and internationally, including its flagship “Insomnia” festival, the largest of its kind in the UK. The Company also provides online multiplayer gaming services to millions of PC gamers around the world. Its clients include some of the biggest names in the games industry including Mojang, Nexon, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, DICE, Jagex Studios and many more.
In 2014, Multiplay’s Insomnia consumer event saw visitor numbers rise 60% with more than 67,000 people attending in person, 1.4 million logging on to the official Insomnia website and over 45 million media impressions recorded through Twitch, YouTube and Flickr. The Insomnia festivals combine stage events, LAN Gaming areas, eSports competitions and a retail expo, plus a chance to meet YouTubers, Minecrafters and pro players. The events attract gamers of all ages, spectators, families as well as dozens of publishers, developers, retailers and eSports organisations.
Multiplay’s CEO and Founder, Craig Fletcher, will continue to lead the business, ensuring continuity of relationships, content and strategy. Craig will report directly to Martyn Gibbs, Group CEO. All 50 of the business’s employees will remain with the Company and will continue to operate from Multiplay’s headquarters in the New Forest, UK.
GAME has acquired the entire issued share capital of Multiplay for a total consideration of £20 million, comprising £12.6 million to be paid in cash on completion and £7.4 million payable in deferred cash and shares over the next 3 years. The initial cash payment will be funded through GAME’s existing cash resources.
Martyn Gibbs, Chief Executive of GAME Digital, said:
“The acquisition of Multiplay is an exciting and strategically important step for GAME. The world of live events, eSports and multiplayer gaming is growing rapidly and one we have been looking to enter for some time. By acquiring Multiplay we are benefitting from nearly two decades of experience, during which time Multiplay has built an exceptional reputation and leading position in its markets. Multiplay has a great management team and a fantastic culture – their passion and enthusiasm for games is infectious.
“Like Multiplay, our communities are at the heart of our business, and together we will be able to move even faster to grow and develop our services for both gamers and suppliers in the UK, Spain and around the world.”
Craig Fletcher, founder and Chief Executive of Multiplay, added:
“GAME and Multiplay are both passionate about games and gaming, building valuable communities of gamers and putting customers first. Over the years we’ve worked closely with the GAME team on many occasions and come to know them well. Our businesses are culturally aligned and I am looking forward to joining and working with Martyn and the team. Being part of GAME means that together we can offer our communities so much more than we ever could have independently and can more rapidly realise our growth aspirations.”