Matcherino, a Seattle-based startup connecting crowdfunding and esports, has successfully raised $2.7 million in Series A funding. The funding round should enable the company to further expand in the area, giving game publishers, tournament organizers, and global brands access to the massive pool of esports fans.
Engaging with esports audiences through Matcherino
Matcherino has created an online platform where game publishers and tournament organizers can easily run and manage esports tournaments and events. As the esports industry continues to expand, an increasing number of brands are looking for ways to capitalize and engage with fans.
Matcherino’s platform has proven to be the perfect place for just that. While organizers can crowdfund through custom game content sales, brands can also make use of the click-through sponsor features. These enable companies to run advertising campaigns and directly contribute to various prize pools. For example, “like Coca-Cola to increase the prize pool by $1.”
“Major global brands are interested in engaging esports fans but are looking for ways to measure the ROI of their esports expenditures,” said Matcherino CEO John Maffei in a statement. “Matcherino helps brands easily reach and deeply engage with esports audiences across hundreds of tournaments each month and lets these sponsors drive the actions and results they value in a measurable way.”
Among the participants in the funding round was aXiomatic Gaming, the LA-based fund launched by Tony Robbins and basketball legend Magic Johnson. The company is also the organization behind Team Liquid, one of the biggest powerhouses in esports.
“aXiomatic’s esports investment strategy targets dynamic companies across the esports ecosystem with potential to enrich player experience or deepen audience engagement,” said aXiomatic Director of Strategy Leo Hsu. “Matcherino’s unique platform ticks both boxes: bringing fan-backed tournaments to life while providing an authentic channel for publishers and sponsors to interact with consumers.”
Matcherino making it happen
The company, founded in 2015, has come a long way since its initial fundraising three years ago. Starting with an engagement platform where fans could fund matches between top players, who in turn get exposure and revenue, the company has added innovative features to its platform.
By launching a go-to place for brands to not only reach and engage with fans but also measure the success of the initiative, the company has created a truly unique way for brands to enter the market. With brand investment measurement becoming an increasingly important topic in esports, with the likes of Nielsen and SuperData already working on own initiatives, Matcherino has placed itself in an excellent position for further growth.