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Strafe, the leading companion app and social betting game for esports fans closes a $3 million seed round led by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures

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Strafe, the leading companion app and social betting game for esports fans closes a $3 million seed round led by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures
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Strafe’s experienced executive team includes leaders behind King’s popular mobile game Candy Crush Saga

 

Strafe, the world’s leading companion app for esports fans, announced today it has raised $3 million in seed funding, led by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures. Designed as an easily accessible central hub for esports enthusiasts, Strafe enables users to completely customize their in-app experience based on personal preferences. Users can stay up to date with their favorite teams and players through real-time updates, view the widest tournament coverage while on the go, compete against other users in a social betting game, and access deep statistics before, during and after matches. Strafe will use this funding to focus on additional user acquisition and to expand its development team to enhance product features and scale its platform to reach more esports fans.

“We are extremely excited to welcome BITKRAFT Esports Ventures as an investor in Strafe,” said Einar Ahlström, CEO and Co-Founder of Strafe. “BITKRAFT is the leading esports VC in the world and they bring much more than just capital to the table. They are deeply connected with all main entities within the esports community and will help propel our business as we execute on our game plan going forward.”

Strafe has one of the world’s biggest esports databases with live coverage of 58,000 matches, 12,000 professional players, 2,600 teams, eight different esports titles and users across 150 countries. The app aggregates and curates esports news and data and gives users the ability to customize the app according to their personal interests. Strafe has also developed its own ranking system which enables odds setting for every esports match covered. Using this odds-system, Strafe has developed a unique entertaining social betting game where users vote on the outcome of games, gain points, climb the leaderboards and compete with other fans.

“Strafe is unlike any app currently on the esports market with extremely high user retention and organic growth and an impressive executive team including Marcus Jacobs, the former director of King’s popular mobile game Candy Crush, who is working to tap into the vast potential of social betting in esports,” commented BITKRAFT Founding Partner, Malte Barth. “We are excited to back an incredible entrepreneurial team from the developing esports and gaming ecosystem in the Nordics that provides more structure to the esports competitive landscape and additional entertainment value to the esports community.”

For more information on Strafe please visit, https://www.strafe.com/.

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BLAST and British Esports Team Up to Bolster UK’s Esports Industry During Landmark Year For the Industry

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BLAST, the global esports entertainment company, and British Esports, the national body for esports in the UK, have announced a strategic partnership during a landmark year for the UK industry.

This collaboration will focus BLAST and British Esports efforts on political lobbying, grassroots development, education, careers, and professional development. The partnership comes during a historic year for the UK esports industry, with a record number of tier one esports events taking place, helping to position the region as a global hub for esports and gaming.

With the UK holding an 6% share of the global esports market and the global sector expected to reach $1.6 billion by the end of this year, this partnership aims to capitalise on this momentum and foster further growth.
Robbie Douek, CEO of BLAST, said: “This partnership with British Esports is a pivotal step in our mission to support the esports ecosystem in the UK. By focusing on key pillars together, we aim to create a sustainable and inclusive environment that encourages growth and professional development at every level. This year alone, the world’s biggest game publishers are choosing the UK as a destination for their esports ecosystems and arena events, helping position the region as a global hub for esports and big-scale events.

This partnership with British Esports will allow us bridge the gap between tier one arena events and grassroots esports.”
Chester King, CEO of British Esports, said: “2024 is a landmark year for esports in the UK as we host some of the most iconic global esports events.

This is an incredible opportunity to leave a legacy from grassroots to professional that promotes the UK as a leading global destination for esports. That is why we were thrilled when Robbie and the team at BLAST visited our National Esports Performance Campus in Sunderland earlier this month to finalise our partnership. This collaboration between two leading British esports organisations will not only help to solidify the UK as a leading hub for esports but also ensure that we are nurturing the next generation of talent and providing them with the tools and opportunities they need to succeed.”

The partnership comes in a month where London is set to host two tier one esports arena events in consecutive weeks, with the BLAST Premier Spring Final taking place in Wembley Arena this week and the RLCS London Major in Copper Box Arena next week. These combined events will see more than 25,000 fans watch live esports events in-person in the United Kingdom in June alone.
To mark the launch of the partnership, Robbie Douek, CEO for BLAST, recently met Dave Martin, SVP for British Esports, for a tour of the National Esports Performance Campus in Sunderland.

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eSports

Intel® Extreme Masters Cologne 2024: All 16 teams set to compete in the 10 year anniversary event

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From August 10 – 18, 16 top Counter-Strike (CS) teams will battle it out during Intel® Extreme Masters (IEM) Cologne 2024 for a share of the $1,000,000 prize pool, a win in the race to secure the Intel® Grand Slam V, and the coveted trophy. Today, we are thrilled to share with you the full lineup of teams competing in the celebratory event.

IEM tournaments are the pinnacle of esports competition for players worldwide and are at the heart of excitement for fans from around the globe. This year, we are celebrating our 10 year anniversary at the LANXESS arena as the final three days of IEM Cologne 2024 will once again take place in the iconic and packed-out arena in Cologne, Germany.

Also dubbed the Cathedral of Counter-Strike, the event’s significance lies in its long-lasting traditions and ability to consistently deliver legendary moments. This year, everyone is invited to go on a trip down memory lane and to experience the world’s best CS teams to-date playing CS2 for the first time on stage in Cologne.

The teams competing at IEM Cologne 2024 are:

  • Team Spirit (IEM Katowice 2024 winner)
  • FaZe Clan (IEM Chengdu 2024 winner)
  • MOUZ (ESL Pro League Season 19 winner)
  • G2 Esports (IEM Dallas 2024 winner)
  • Team Vitality (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • Natus Vincere (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • Astralis (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • Virtus.pro (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • ALTERNATE aTTaX (Online Qualifier Germany)
  • HEROIC (ESL World Ranking Europe)
  • Eternal Fire (ESL World Ranking Europe)
  • Team Falcons (ESL World Ranking Europe)
  • Complexity Gaming (ESL World Ranking North America)
  • 9z Globant (ESL World Ranking South America)
  • The MongolZ (ESL World Ranking Asia)
  • FlyQuest (ESL World Ranking Oceania)
  • Team Liquid (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • Imperial Esports (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • FURIA Esports (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • BIG (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • BetBoom Team (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • paiN Gaming (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • MIBR (ESL World Ranking Global)
  • SAW (ESL World Ranking Global)
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SIS strengthens bet365 partnership with global launch of eSoccer product

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SIS strengthens bet365 partnership with global launch of eSoccer product
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Operator significantly enhances content offering around the world

SIS (Sports Information Services), the leading content supplier of 24/7 live betting services, has agreed a landmark deal with long-term partner, bet365, to deliver its comprehensive eSoccer portfolio across all regulated markets and boost the renowned operator’s global offering.

The integration of the complete suite of H2H Global Gaming League™ eSoccer matches will see bet365 benefit from the increase in betting opportunities which are proven to maximise engagement and margin.

The agreement considerably strengthens SIS’ Competitive Gaming offering across the globe with eBasketball already live. The addition of eSoccer contests means more than 150,000 events will now be available on the world’s leading sports betting operator’s online platform.

Built specifically for sportsbooks, SIS’ H2H Global Gaming League™ is proven to deliver superior margins, adding as much as 10% in value to operators. Professional gamers take part in all eBasketball and eSoccer matches which are produced entirely in-house at SIS’s UK-based secure studios.

Competitive Gaming is the only product available on the market to have been awarded the Esports Integrity Commission’s (ESIC) Gold Standards. The highest possible accreditation created to set unmatched levels of integrity and safety in the industry, it has trained referees overseeing every contest.

Paul Witten, Managing Director EMEA at SIS, said: “We are very pleased to launch our eSoccer product as part of our long-term partnership with bet365.

“It is evident that customers have taken to our fast-paced, highly competitive short-form action and engage with the many available betting opportunities and we expect this to continue with the integration of our complete Competitive Gaming offering across regulated markets.”

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