2017 US Esports Startups Raised ~$200M


TNL Take: The money that poured into esports in 2017, from team investment to franchise buy-ins, was astonishing.  

US startups haven't been left out of the bounty as they took in almost $200M in venture funding last year.

2017 US Esports Funding Hits ~$200M (Graph: The Next Level)

2017 US Esports Funding Hits ~$200M (Graph: The Next Level)

Here's a breakdown of who got the investment and where they play in the esports ecosystem (Note: Some startups tread the line between esports, gaming and content):

Discord ($50M): Messaging, chat and game integration with ~100M users. Basically Slack/Skype for gamers

Skillz ($25M): Mobile esports platform

Super Evil Megacorp ($19M): Publisher of mobile esports game Vainglory

Super League Gaming ($15M): Organizes esports events and leagues within movie theaters

Plays.tv ($15M): Game highlights and social sharing platform

Smash.gg ($11M): Esports tournament organization platform

Underworld Esports ($10M* Estimated): Portland based esports team

Sliver.tv ($9.8M): 3D/VR live streaming platform for esports

Wavedash Games ($6M): Game publisher with upcoming esports title

Gamer Sensei ($4M): Esports coaching platform

Gawkbox ($3.7M): Monetization tools for streamers 

Guilded ($3.2M): Esports team management platform

Maestro ($3M): Enterprise live streaming monetization and data collection

Haste ($3M): Network performance for esports

Genvid ($2.5M): Esports interactive broadcasts 

FanAI ($1.8M): Esports audience monetization platform

Taunt ($1.75M): Esports fan competition platform

Matcherino ($1.5M): Crowd funded esports prize pools

VY Esports ($1.5M): Platform bridging esports, media companies and brands

Foundry IV (Undisclosed): Esports game developer


As expected, the majority of investment was West Coast based with 12 of the 20 investments taking place in California.

2017 US Esports Funding Hits ~$200M (Map: The Next Level)

2017 US Esports Funding Hits ~$200M (Map: The Next Level)

What will 2018 hold?

Potentially a further surge in seed stage rounds with some of those above already looking for Series A.