Animoca Brands, the Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming developer and prominent crypto projects investor, has bagged $110 million in funding by issuing convertible notes as the company lays groundwork for a possible initial public offering.
The latest funding round is led by Singapore’s state-owned investment firm Temasek, as well as U.S. venture capital firm GGV Capital and Chinese private equity firm Boyu Capital, according to a company statement on Thursday. Other participants include existing investors Mirae Asset Management and True Global Ventures. Animoca Brands’ valuation remains at roughly $5.9 billion, it said.
“We are incredibly pleased to complete a special strategic round of fundraising comprising several of the most respected institutional investors in the world,” said Yat Siu, cofounder and chairman of Animoca Brands. “Our new investors will contribute strategic advice and perspective as we build the world’s leading company furthering digital property rights in the Web3 industry.”
Temasek, GGV and Boyu Capital will engage and advise Animoca Brands on a range of business issues, specifically on organization, process and governance that allows it to become “pre-IPO ready,” the blockchain gaming company said. But Animoca Brands added that it has neither laid out the timeframe nor the domicile for the listing. It was delisted from the Australian Securities Exchange in March 2020 for breaching the bourse’s listing rules.
The capital will be used to continue to fund strategic acquisitions, investments, product development, secure licenses for intellectual properties and expansion into the open metaverse.
When Animoca Brands was established in 2014, it mainly focused on developing games for smartphones and tablets. But starting around 2017, it began to venture into blockchain games that enable players to own and trade in-game assets in the form of NFTs. As of April this year, Animoca Brands said its investment portfolio had grown to more than 340 crypto-related companies and projects.
Animoca Brands has been able to attract a slew of big-name investors seeking to buy into its efforts to develop the open metaverse. Less than two months ago, Animoca Brands bagged $75 million in a funding round that valued it at $5.9 billion despite the ongoing downturn in the crypto market. The company’s long list of investors include billionaire George Soros’ Soros Fund Management, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss’ Gemini Frontier Fund, Sequoia China and many others.
“The reality is that companies like us and in the ecosystem we’re building, we are still the minority,” said Siu in a virtual panel at Hong Kong’s GAME ON! 2022 conference on Thursday, pointing to tech giants like Facebook that are also venturing into Web3. “We’re the Davids and they’re the Goliath. And so we have to be absolutely conscious of this, meaning that we have to continue investing…keep acquiring companies and move them into Web3.”