Esports company NIP Group plans to go public in the US

On 14 June, NIP Group officially filed for an IPO in the US under the ticker symbol NIPG, with underwriters including Deutsche Bank, CICC, Tiger Securities and GF Securities. If NIP Group successfully goes public, the company will become the “No.1 Esports stock in China”.

NIP Group is based in Sweden and was founded in 2000 with the participation of Mario Ho Yau Kwan, son of the flamboyant ‘godfather’ of Macau casinos Stanley Ho. Mario is the company’s largest shareholder with a 14.2% stake. Back in 2018, Mario founded Victory Five Esports Club and became president of the Macau Gaming Federation.

In January 2023, the company merged with the Chinese company eStar Gaming Victory Five (ESV5 – a joint venture between eStar Gaming and Victory Five) through a share swap, and the new entity was renamed NIP Group, with ESV5 now operating under the NIP China Division. Under the name of NIP China, it currently operates Honor of Kings and League of Legends teams, while the Swedish division is involved in tournaments such as EA Sports FC24 and Counter-Strike 2.

The prospectus shows that in 2023 NIP Group had revenues of 83.7 million USD and a net loss attributable to shareholders of 57.2 million USD. As of the end of last year, the company’s two teams had won 117 tournaments with prizes totalling about 19.1 million USD. The prospectus also shows that NIP Group currently has business operations in Asia, Europe and South America and plans to enter the Middle East in 2024. As of 31 December 2023, NIP Group had 16 million followers on social media platforms globally.  

According to the 2023 Annual China Esports Industry Report, in 2023, the actual revenue of China’s Esports industry was 26.35 billion RMB (approxi. 3.63 billion USD). In the composition of revenue, Esports content livestreaming revenue accounted for the highest proportion of 80.87%, and the rest was tournament revenue, club revenue and so on.

In 2023, the size of China’s Esports users was 488 million, up 0.1% year-on-year, which is not a significant growth. However, along with the success of the Hangzhou Asian Games Esports event attracting more attention from the public, it is therefore expected that the scale of Esports users may still have some room for growth.


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