UK-based esports organisation Guild Esports has detailed its growth in a financial report covering October 2020 to March 2021.
The org – backed by David Beckham – had an audience of 160,000 as of March 31st 2021. This has risen to almost 800,000 since then, increasing by 50% month-on-month, as Guild hopes to reach the 1m mark by the end of its current financial year at the end of September.
If you include Guild’s roster of pro players and content creators, this reach extended to 8m as of March 31st, or around 15.6m now (not including Beckham’s 125m+ followers).
Guild says this has cemented it as ‘the world’s fastest-growing esports organisation’.
The organisation made a pre-tax loss of £4.28m and revenues of £0.37m for the half-year period, and said the loss was ‘principally due to higher administrative costs as the company scaled up its commercial operations post IPO’ (it listed on the London Stock Exchange in October 2020).
Administrative expenses included £0.73m of employee and executive director salaries, £1.73m in marketing, ambassador fees and content production, and £0.5m in player and coach fees.
To date, the company has signed four sponsorship deals with contracted revenues of £7.5m, with the likes of Samsung and Subway. Guild revenues come from these sponsorship deals, as well as merch sales, in-game micro transactions and its Guild Academy subscription service, which also ‘provides a pipeline of talent for Guild’s roster of teams and the esports transfer market’.
The news comes after Guild player TaySon won the Fortnite FNCS All-Star Showdown a few days ago.
Other achievements for Guild include securing first and second place in season five of the FNCS, third in season six, and third/fourth place in the Valorant VCT 1 and VCT 2, as well as first place in the Rocket League Spring Cup Regional 3.
In the six months to March 31st 2021, Guild won £0.3m in prize money, before deductions.
Guild also announced its first branded digital product for sale in Rocket League on December 8th 2020, and received £19,000 in royalties in the period to March 31st 2021.
Guild revealed further plans for its recently launched academy, including integration of FPS aim training tool Aim Lab, expansion and localisation for the academy including ‘native support for audiences throughout the world’ and confirmed Valorant and FIFA would be added to the academy this year, following initial titles Fortnite and Rocket League.
The org said its business model is ‘to develop a global esports brand with a large viewership and a loyal fanbase, derived from a combination of top-tier esports teams, a world-class academy, influencers and content creators’.
Kal Hourd, Guild CEO, said: “In the first six months since our IPO we have executed our strategy of investing in and building best-in-class esports teams, content creators, lifestyle apparel and our academy system, along with a fully supported operations team. This has attracted multi-year partnerships with prestigious global brands such as Subway, Hyper X and Samsung, with a minimum of £7.5m in contracted revenue already secured.
“The rapidly growing fanbase, attraction of top-tier talent, and multi-year authentic partnerships is a true testament to the brand we have built in the short space of time since our IPO.”
Guild was first founded in September 2019 as ‘The Lords Esports’ before relaunching to Guild Esports in June 2020.
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
A keen League of Legends and World of Warcraft player, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.