GAME Acquires eSports’ Multiplay for £20 Million

Gaming retailer GAME has reportedly acquired eSport events organiser Multiplay for £20 million – almost $31 million – with an initial payment of £12.6 million coming straight from GAME’s pockets. The rest of the payment is expected to come from GAME’s future eSports earnings, once GAME manages to get going in the eSports business, that is. After acquiring Multiplay, GAME is expected to have a massive advantage over some of its competitors in the already extremely competitive eSports industry, due to the fact that Multiplay is extremely well known in the industry.

Multiplay is currently best known for its annual Insomnia event, which last year boasted an attendance of over 67,000 people. The annual event is known for combining competitive gaming and a retail expo, and normally it gathers together a number of many well known YouTubers known for their gaming shows on the video service.

Both GAME CEO Martyn Gibbs and Multiplay founder and CEO Craig Fletcher released a joint statement saying that it is currently expected that no jobs will be lost as a result of the deal, and that Fletcher will report directly to Gibbs going into the future. Gibbs has also said that GAME has been looking into entering the eSports business for quite some time.

“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.”

The last time GAME hit major headlines was back in 2012 when it was announced that the gaming retail giant was facing bankruptcy, although GAME was subsequently bought and managed to recover over the past several years. However, they still aren’t in the same financial position that it was in at its peak, and stumbled slightly recently, saying that diminished margins on gaming products would lead to lower profits that previously expected. This may, however, be down to the ever increasing rise of digital downloads, something which GAME has yet to enter, as it primarily deals with physical games and products.

[Image via Smurfy/Wikimedia Commons]