FaZe Clan has made history as the first esports collective to become a publicly-traded company.
Founded in 2010 as a Call of Duty clan, the organisation quickly became one of the most popular esports teams in the world in recent years, garnering mainstream success and fame by platforming its team members as personalities and taking a social media-led approach to the brand’s strategy.
Now a full-fledged lifestyle brand, FaZe Clan is again flipping the industry on its head with the news that it’s merging with B. Riley Principal 150 Merger Corp in a deal that has the combined companies valued at $1 billion.
The brand will hit the NASDAQ in 2022, with the expectation of raising $291 million to help fund its “global multi-platform growth strategy spanning content, gaming, entertainment, and consumer products, including potential acquisitions”.
Despite the hype, some are skeptical of its steep valuation. Esports journalist Jacob Wolf took to Twitter to compare FaZe’s valuation with the valuation of Team Solo Mid’s parent company, Swift, noting that it’s more than double.
He also notes that FaZe’s success is largely based on fans’ parasocial relationship with its members rather than its business dealings, making the organisation’s success possibly less stable in the long term.
Regardless, FaZe Clan acknowledged the role their fans have played in the group’s success during the merger announcement, calling this new chapter “a huge moment for everybody who grew up on the internet with us”.
FaZe Clan will be listed on the NASDAQ under the ticker FAZE from 2022.