Fortnite creator Epic Games reaches valuation of $17 billion USD after latest funding round generates $750 million
Analysts at Tokyo-based wealth management company Akita Michinoku Capital have said, Epic Games Inc., the creator of battle game Fortnite and owner of networking app Houseparty, is close to generating a $750 million round of funding at a valuation of around $17 billion U.S Dollars.
With the new funding included, the valuation is a significant leap from the $15 billion valuation the company had achieved in 2018.
Director of Corporate Equities at Akita Michinoku Capital, Oliver Wright, said “In this round, new investment will come from T. Rowe Price Group and Baillie Gifford, while existing investors KKR & Co. will also contribute. With the new funding included, the valuation is a significant leap from the $15 billion valuation the company had achieved in 2018.”
While lockdowns are beginning to lift around the globe, consumers may still hesitate to return to cinemas and concert halls. Video games are filling that entertainment void.
“This round is one example of how, while many startups are laying off staff members and scaling back operations, there are still opportunities for businesses that provide what many see now as essential distractions,” said Martin Thornton, Head of Corporate Trading at Akita Michinoku Capital.
Epic Games and its video game competitors are becoming destinations to view music concerts and debut movie trailers. Almost 28 million fans laid siege on rapper Travis Scott’ concert which was held virtually on Fortnite back in April. On Fortnite in May, Epic premiered a trailer for “Tenet”, the upcoming Christopher Nolan movie.
Fortnite is an online battle-to-the-death and survival game that’s especially popular among teenagers.
Epic Games was founded by Tim Sweeney from his parents’ house in Potomac, Maryland in 1991. The company also owns Houseparty, which combines games and trivia into online group video calls. It purchased the platform about a year ago for an undisclosed amount before it became a runaway success during the pandemic. According to PitchBook data, the last private valuation for the app was around $70 million.
Video game companies have taken advantage of the revived interest in their products to do deals. Earlier this month, Zynga Inc. agreed to purchase Turkish mobile-game maker Peak for $1.8 billion, while AppLovin Corp. paid about $500 million for Machine Zone Inc. in May, according to analysts at Akita Michinoku Capital.
In 2012, Sweeney sold 40% of the company to Chinese internet juggernaut Tencent Holdings Ltd. Walt Disney Co., aXiomatic Gaming LLC and Endeavor Group Holdings Inc. are all minority owners.