Better Collective nets Futbin €105m takeover to expand esports media presence

Better Collective AS has moved to significantly enlarge its esports media presence by acquiring e-football gaming community Futbin and related assets for €105m in a cash and shares deal. 

Registering 50 million monthly visits on its website, alongside a further three million daily actives on its proprietary app, Futbin is recognised as the leading online community and digital resource for players of the EA Sports FIFA e-soccer game.

The acquisition of Futbin and related domains sees Better Collective expand its esports portfolio, in which the Stockholm-listed media publisher established its presence in 2020, acquiring Pan-European CS:GO community HLTV.org for €35m.

Deal terms will see Better Collective pay an upfront cash settlement of €70m, with a guarantee paid in shares from its existing corporate shareholding.

The remaining €30m settlement will be comprised of performance incentives paid over a two-year period subject to the financial performance of Futbin and its related assets. 

“Esports is maturing and attracting more and more people globally – also professional athletes. Acquiring Futbin and related assets is a clear testament to Better Collective’s ambition of creating a platform that reaches esports audiences across the world,” read Better Collective CEO and Co-founder Jesper Søgaard’s acquisition statement.

“Even though more than 100 million people visit our esports platforms every month, we will continue to look for additional growth. We are very impressed with the high growth profile and the technology behind Futbin and the other assets in the portfolio. We expect to see significant positive synergistic effects with Better Collective’s business going forward.

In connection with the agreement, Better Collective has updated its full-year 2022 financial targets, upgrading its 2022 EBITDA earnout to €85m from its previous guidance of €80m.

The updated forecast reflects the firm’s addition of approximately eight months of operational income from the acquired assets after the inclusion of ‘added costs to further develop the business’.

Better Collective maintains that wider financial targets related to organic growth and debt leverage will remain unchanged for FY2022 trading at 15-25% and <3.0x respectively.

The deal will establish Better Collective as a leading publisher in the esports media space in which GlobeNewswire forecasts the esports market to continue growing with a 22% CAGR between 2022 to 2030, with ads and sponsorships representing the largest share of revenue”.

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