Michael Jordan is part of a $1.25 billion investment into the company who produced Fortnite
The company behind the wildly successful online multiplayer game Fortnite, Epic Games, has received a US$1.25 billion investment with as many as seven investors becoming new minority shareholders in the company.
Led by private equity firm KKR, the latest funding round includes Iconiq Capital, Smash Ventures, aXiomatic, Vulcan Capital, Kleiner Perkins, and Lightspeed Venture Partners.
AXiomatic has recently undergone a US$26 million funding round, with NBA legend Michael Jordan one of the lead investors.
The commitment from these investing firms suggests the growing popularity in online gaming will continue, especially with A-list celebrities such as Drake, Travis Scott and Joe Jonas all huge advocates of the game.
Epic Games say the new influx of investors will create ‘powerful partnerships with highly strategic investment firms and individuals at the forefront of technology, entertainment, professional sports, esports, and live events’.
KKR director, Ted Oberwager said: “Epic Games has fundamentally changed the model for interactive entertainment under the company’s visionary leadership.
“Alongside a special group of investors, we are thrilled to support Epic’s dedicated employees and the passionate community of players and developers that lies at the heart of everything that Epic Games does.”
Although playing Fortnite is free, there are many opportunities for players to fund an upgrade, with reports suggesting the company generated $300 million from such purchases in April alone.
Epic Games founder and chief executive, Tim Sweeney added: “We’re excited to partner with the finest minds in the financial, sports, and entertainment communities.
“This reinforces Epic’s position of leadership in real-time 3D technology, and accelerates our ability to improve the way people play, work, and interact with the world.”
It has been reported that Epic Games is now valued at almost US$15 billion, having been valued at US$660 million just six years ago.
The company’s existing investors include the likes of Disney and Chinese digital giant Tencent, which purchased a 48 per cent stake in the company in 2012.