Check out a rare esports pitch deck which pro-gaming brand Fnatic used to raise $10 million

  • Esports startup Fnatic has raised $10 million in an internal funding round led by Beringea. 
  • The market for esports has continued to grow during the coronavirus pandemic and trending towards some 300 million viewers by 2023. 
  • "During the pandemic, more and more people turned to gaming as a way to stay sane and have fun while they have been largely locked away," Sam Mathews, founder and CEO of Fnatic, told Business Insider.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Pro gaming has boomed during the coronavirus pandemic with local lockdowns forcing people indoors. 

The growing market is set to hit 295.4 million frequent viewers worldwide by 2023. 

To that end, esports teams are raising external funding in the hope of supercharging their growth. UK esports startup Fnatic has just raised $10 million led by Beringea to capitalize on the growing interest.

"Esports has risen to prominence as an entertainment vehicle and became even more visible to the mainstream audience," Sam Mathews, founder and CEO of Fnatic, told Business Insider. "Also, during the pandemic, more and more people turned to gaming as a way to stay sane and have fun while they have been largely locked away."

Founded in 2004, Fnatic is an umbrella brand for teams of professional gamers who compete in tournaments for popular titles including "Apex Legends", "Dota 2", "Heroes of the Storm", "League of Legends", "PUBG Mobile", and "Rainbow Six Siege". In recent years the startup has been one of the most watched teams worldwide and has brought in winnings of nearly $16 million across 903 tournaments. It also sells gaming kit.

The internal funding round was led by Beringea with participation from existing investors Unbound, LVL1 Group, and JHD. The funds will go towards continuing to support Fnatic's teams, including its Counter Strike:Global Offensive side, through a "High Performance Unit." 

Fnatic has also announced that it has launched a crowd equity campaign with Crowdcube alongside the funding round.

"Esports has shown resilience to COVID-19 and its adaptability and relative success within entertainment shows it can adapt to overcome serious existential challenges," Mathews said. "Of all the winners from the COVID-19 content crunch, developers, streaming platforms and streamers seem to have fared best."

Karen McCormick, chief investment officer at Beringea said the industry is still in adolescence, despite its growth.

She said: "Having evaluated the industry from many angles, Fnatic was a relatively simple investment decision given the premier status of the brand, consistency as a true performance company, and growth and engagement of the fan base."

Check out Fnatic's pitch deck below:

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