Fladgate acted for Guild Esports PLC (Company) on its admission to the Official List (by way of a Standard Listing) and to trading on the London Stock Exchange’s Main Market for listed securities, contemporaneously with a £20m equity placing. Guild Esports had a market capitalisation of approximately £41m on admission.
The Company is the first esports franchise to join the LSE, and its founding shareholders include David Beckham, former football player and captain of England, and now co-owner of new MLS team Inter Miami CF.
Carleton Curtis, Executive Chairman at Guild Esports said, “I am grateful for the support provided by David Robinson, David Baverstock and the rest of the team at Fladgate. Guild’s admission to the London Stock Exchange is an exciting milestone for our organisation and for the wider esports industry as we are the first esports team organisation to list on a major global exchange. The professionalism and diligence of the team at Fladgate has contributed to the success of our flotation.”
The move comes as esports benefits from a rapidly growing fan base worldwide with some tournaments attracting a bigger audience than the Wimbledon tennis championships, Tour de France and the US Open. The market is projected to grow to 646 million viewers by 2023 from 443 million last year.
The Company plans to create a leading global franchise by establishing its own esports teams to compete in major esports tournaments and a player training and scouting infrastructure modelled on the talent academies pioneered by Premier League football teams over many years. Additionally, David Beckham will use his global influence and following to support the development of the Company’s brand and business.
Fladgate has acted for Guild Esports since its establishment, guiding it through the listing and fundraising process, as well as assisting it with commercial agreements, intellectual property and data protection issues.
David Robinson, Partner and Head of Corporate added, “Working with the Guild team from incorporation to IPO has been a tremendous journey, but the IPO is just the start for Guild which is set to establish itself as a leading global franchise with its own esports teams competing in major esports tournaments.”
The Fladgate team comprised partners David Robinson and Alan Wetterhahn, Senior Associate David Baverstock, Associates Thomas Edwards and Michelle Waknine, and Legal Assistant Joshua Bennett.