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Drake invests in esports betting startup Players & # 39; Lounge – TechCrunch



Drake's recent collaboration is not with Kanye or Kendrick, it's with Marissa Mayer.

Rapeseed superstar has joined a number of Silicon Valley investors, including Strauss Zelnick, Comcast, Macro Ventures, Canaan, RRE, Courtside and Marissa Mayer, to fund Players & # 39; Lounge, an esports start to pit players against each other in their favorite titles with some friendly bets on the line.

Startup has just announced it closed $ 3 million in funding.

The company, which has been in existence for five years, started as an esports startup who wants to organize live matches in New York City bars to play FIFA. Of course, it's not the most scalable business all the time, but last year after joining Y Combinator, the company really kills a new model that seemed to create an online hub for players to fight each other in selected titles with money on line.

The company attaches great importance to sports titles, such as FIFA 1

9, NBA 2K19 and Madden 19, but there are also some heavy hiters like Fortnite, Apex Legends and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Players can set a match or participate in one in head-to-head challenges or in massive 500-person tournaments. The stakes are often a buck or two, but can swell much higher. Players & # 39; Lounge takes 10 percent of the bets as a fee. Because it is a game of skill, not a chance, there are not many problems with the game rules, although a few states still do not allow the service, the company says.

The startup plans to use their new money to steak up their library of playable games and add to their development team.


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