Fnatic: Fans Can Now Invest in Their Team

Esport industry has been steadily growing with an estimated outreach of over 1.43 billion people, as per 2018 data. As of 2020, it is estimated that the global esport revenue will grow up to 1.1 billion dollars. This will represent a growth of 15.7 percent in 2019. As time goes by, Esport games are continuously becoming popular both domestically and internationally, where skilled video players compete. Similar to traditional games, Esports too has a variety of competitions. Some of the most preferred games include Call of Duty, Fifa, League of Legends, Fortnite, etc.

One growing aspect of the Esport industry is that more and more companies are now being open to the idea that fans can now invest in their teams. This means that fans can now enjoy making money as their teams grow. Reports depict that over 380 million people worldwide watch and play Esport, either in person or online gaming. With covid19 restricting movement, most people resorted to playing games online. This saw a sharp increase in esport viewership and participation. Contrary to popular belief, esport games are more similar to physical games.

Why Fnatic is giving fans a chance to partly own the team

Fnatic, one of the most established Esport brands with revenues of 38.2 million dollars per year, is giving its fans the opportunity to purchase a small percentage of its company. Sam Mathews, Fnatic chairman, said that fan ownership could become a common thing in Esports. According to him, fan ownership is a more accurate method of bringing fans along to the team’s journey.

The team is currently taping over £7.5 million in private financing, with a 1.5 percentage set to be owned by the fans. Until the announcement, fans had no opportunity of being part of the team. These opportunities were only available for the ‘who’s who’ of the esport industry and, in other cases, institutional investors.

Benefits Involved

According to Sam, Esport fan ownership will benefit people by giving them opportunities to sit at the high table and be involved in the team’s happenings. When funds are involved, the fans will automatically follow the team’s overall performance. If the team does not perform as expected, the fans will escalate the pressure on the team, which will make the players dive deeper and perform better.

If many of the team’s new expected stakeholders do not feel that they are handled well, the results will be turning their backs on the company. By this notion, the overall management will always be on toes to ensure that the fans are listened to at all times. Sam agrees that offering fans a degree of ownership gives them the entitlement to be extremely vocal in their disappointment when any decision goes against their wishes.

On the other hand, the chairman notes that not everything goes as planned, and in some instances, the fans could lose their investment. For this reason, they are giving the fans a small stake that they can sell if anything goes wrong.