A Danish esports group is about to become the first public gaming team company when it lists on a Copenhagen exchange next week.
Denmark's Astralis, a media company that owns the top team in the world in the first-person shooter game "Counter-Strike: Global Offensive," plans a to list next week on Nasdaq's First North Growth Market Denmark, a Copenhagen-based exchange for small companies.
The company said in a statement Monday that its offering of new shares ended successfully and is "solidly oversubscribed," with orders of more than $32 million, with shares priced at 8.95 Danish kroner ($1.33).
Pioneers In Growing Esports Market
Newzoo estimates the global esports industry will generate more than $1 billion this year, and some estimates say it may double that in a couple years as global internet viewership grows, with an audience that's expected to approach 600 million by 2022.
Analysts consider it a burgeoning space, but one where investment opportunities have been limited mostly to a few big game publishers, diversified tech companies that are part of the gaming hardware or game design scenes and smaller platform companies such as Super League Gaming Inc. (NASDAQ: SLGG) — rather than the professional leagues or teams themselves.
That puts Astralis in the vanguard.
"Being pioneers, we’re building on a strong foundation and this IPO enables us to invest further in building the world’s strongest esports media brands," Astralis Group co-CEO Nikolaj Nyholm said in a statement.
“There’s a lot of buzz around esports and what it might turn out to become in five years’ time,” Nordnet investment economist Per Hansen told Bloomberg. "The timing is also good, given investors’ appetite for new equity during the current regime of ultra low interest rates."
In addition to "Counter-Strike," a game first released two decades ago, Astralis also has teams that compete in Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA)'s "FIFA" soccer video games and the multiplayer online battle arena game "League of Legends" from Tencent Holding/ADR (OTC: TCEHY)-owned publisher Riot Games.
The first day of trading on the Nasdaq First North Growth Market Denmark for Astralis shares is expected to be Monday, Dec. 9, under the symbol "ASTGRP," the company said.
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"Counter-Strike" screenshot via Wikimedia.
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