LiveScore Group to Accelerate Global Expansion Following £50 Million Strategic Investment from Ringier AG
- Ringier AG’s investment values LiveScore Group‘s gaming and media business at £500 million
- New strategic partnership unites two of the most exciting players in global sports media
- Ringier continues to strengthen its sports growth strategy via its new dedicated sports vertical Ringier Sports Media Group
- LiveScore Group is home to LiveScore, LiveScore Bet and Virgin Bet, three pioneering brands within the sports and gaming industries
LiveScore Group and Ringier AG have today announced a landmark strategic partnership, with the Swiss-based media and technology company making a substantial investment in LiveScore Group’s rapidly growing sports media and gaming business.
The deal will fuel the expansion of the industry-disrupting business which incorporates leading brands LiveScore, LiveScore Bet and Virgin Bet. LiveScore Group is a rapidly scaling business, which has made significant share gains in highly competitive markets. This has been achieved through leveraging its differentiated customer acquisition funnel with bespoke gaming integrations across its LiveScore assets.
As the latest evolution within one of Europe’s pre-eminent media businesses, the recently created Ringier Sports Media Group division boasts a thriving portfolio of innovative businesses which are changing the way global audiences interact and engage with sport. The new strategic investment in LiveScore Group will specifically accelerate growth across key Central and Eastern European territories, a notable strength of Ringier’s sports media assets.
Following the investment, Stilian Shishkov will join the Supervisory Board of LiveScore Group. Shishkov is currently Senior Partner of the Ringier Sports Media Group, as well as founder and CEO of Ringier`s Sportal Media Group in Bulgaria.
The significant new investment comes after three-years of eye-catching performance for LiveScore Group, founded in 2019 by former Gamesys Chairman and co-founder Noel Hayden, and led by industry veteran Sam Sadi.
Sam Sadi, CEO LiveScore Group: “This is a hugely significant day for LiveScore Group, as we take a significant step forward following a £50 million strategic investment from Ringier which values our business at £500 million. Ringier, with its Sports Media Group, is the perfect partner as we look to accelerate our expansion into Central and Eastern European territories, given their outstanding expertise, assets and relationships.”
Noel Hayden, Executive Chairman LiveScore Group Board: “I’m excited to see two of the most innovative sport and media businesses form a game-changing new relationship. This is a breakthrough moment which will allow LiveScore Group to maximise strategic opportunities together with Ringier, and to deliver better experiences and value for sports fans around the world.”
Marc Walder, CEO Ringier AG: “From delivering real-time sports scores and free-to-air live streams to millions of global users, to offering the most innovative and trusted sportsbook betting opportunities, LiveScore Group has demonstrated it is already a true industry leader and will be a fantastic business partner for Ringier. Together, we aim to enhance, and increase the enjoyment of sport, through innovative products, and immersive experiences under the operational lead of the Ringier Sports Media Group. With LiveScore Group’s support we will better understand the way people feel about sport and what it means to them. Our vision is to fuel the fans’ passion for sport.”
Robin Lingg, Chairman of the Ringier Sports Media Group Supervisory Board: “Sports media is THE place where sports audiences, athletes and advertisers meet. Within its three-month existence, Ringier Sports Media Group has very purposefully put into practice its founding promise, to unite leading digital sports media brands under its umbrella. The participation in LiveScore Group is another decisive step to develop innovative products based on common technologies in the future and to benefit from the exchange of know-how. That a leading business such as LiveScore Group has agreed to work closely with us in strategic partnership is truly a tribute to our vision of sports media at Ringier.”
The Ringier Sports Media Group includes the sports brands of Sportal Media Group and Digital Ventures OOD in Bulgaria, Gazeta Sporturilor in Romania, Sportal.rs in Serbia and Pulse in Africa. The group`s portfolio is set to grow strongly in the coming months through mergers and acquisitions as well as newly launched products.
Moelis & Company LLC acted as financial advisor and CMS acted as legal advisor to LiveScore Group. DLA Piper acted as legal advisor and KPMG as financial advisor to Ringier AG.
About LiveScore Group
LiveScore Group is home to LiveScore, LiveScore Bet and Virgin Bet, three of the most exciting brands in the sports and gaming industries today. The Group was demerged from the Gamesys group of companies (now part of Bally’s Corporation) in September 2019. LiveScore was previously acquired in 2017 as a means of moving into the sports media industry, while Virgin Bet was launched in 2019 following a partnership with Virgin to enter the sports betting market. Today, LiveScore Groups sits within the Anzo Group of companies.
Whether it is LiveScore delivering real-time sports scores or free-to-air live streams to its users across 200 territories, or LiveScore Bet and Virgin Bet offering innovative and trusted sportsbook betting opportunities, we bring our audiences closer than ever to the sports they love with our best-in-class products.
- About LiveScore
An early pioneer in the online sports media space, LiveScore™️ was founded in 1998 and is one of the world’s leading sports updates and streaming services. Following its acquisition in 2017, the LiveScore business was subsequently demerged into the Anzo Group in 2019. With millions of global users across over 200 territories, it’s long been an essential part of the match-day experience for football fans who rely on the service to provide the simplest, fastest, and most reliable updates on matches that matter to them.
- About LiveScore Bet
LiveScore Bet™, is a sportsbook offering customers in the UK, Ireland, and Netherlands a new and improved betting experience. Building on the existing user relationship with the trusted LiveScore brand that is already a core part of the live sport experience, LiveScore Bet seeks to deliver a best-in-class product and represents a new opportunity for customers to bet responsibly.
- About Virgin Bet
Virgin Bet™ was launched in the UK in May 2019. With access to a huge range of betting markets across all the top sports, as well as the nation’s most popular casino products, Virgin Bet delivers a top-quality experience for its customers and has the perfect line-up to disrupt the sportsbook industry. VIRGIN and the Virgin Signature Logo are trademarks of Virgin Enterprises Limited and are used under licence.
Ringier is a Media- and Technology Company Swiss by nature. The Group includes over 130 companies operating numerous leading media brands, digital platforms, and marketplaces. Ringier addresses every walk of life and touches the lives of millions of people – every day around the globe in 19 countries. 73 percent of operating profit comes from the digital sector. This puts Ringier in the group of leading European media companies. The family-owned enterprise believes in entrepreneurship, collaboration, innovation, trust and courage for nearly 190 years. In a world that’s becoming ever more complex and challenging, Ringier`s mission is to keep interest alive and to ensure that customers, users, or readers never lose sight of what connects them:
EQT Growth invests EUR 100 million in IntegrityNext, a sustainability software platform dedicated to making supply chains more transparent and compliant
- Munich-based IntegrityNext empowers businesses to meet regulatory ESG requirements, manage ESG risks and improve supply chain sustainability.
- The Company operates in a rapidly growing market that will likely benefit from the introduction of several major regulatory frameworks around climate protection and human rights, as ESG compliance and risk assessment becomes a “license to operate” issue
- Its cloud-based software platform is used by more than 200 customers, including Siemens Gamesa, Infineon, SwissRe, Kion and Hilti. To date, the company monitors almost 1 million suppliers in more than 190 countries
- EQT Growth will support the Company as its first institutional investor, leveraging its experience of investing throughout the tech value-chain, global network of sustainability and technology advisors, and in-house teams of digitization and sustainability experts
STOCKHOLM, March 23, 2023 — The EQT Growth fund (“EQT Growth”) has today announced a EUR 100 million investment in IntegrityNext (“the Company”), a sustainability software platform dedicated to enabling supply chain transparency and regulatory compliance. Co-founders Martin Berr-Sorokin (CEO), Simon Jaehnig (CRO) and Nick Heine (COO), who have grown the business whilst bootstrapped to date, will continue to lead the Company.
Founded in 2016 and headquartered in Munich, Germany, IntegrityNext has grown to serve more than 200 customers and monitoring almost one million suppliers, making it one of the leading environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) Certification software solutions in Europe. Its cloud-based platform enables enterprises – such as Siemens Gamesa, Infineon, SwissRe, Kion and Hilti – to assess risk and monitor a large portion of their supply chain for ESG metrics and compliance, allowing them to meet stakeholder demands and regulatory requirements. IntegrityNext has also partnered and integrated with leading enterprise software tools, including Celonis, Coupa and SAP, allowing it to offer supply chain assessments across numerous major industries.
The penetrated market in Europe for sustainability supply chain software solutions is expected to see strong growth over the next years. According to market estimates, the penetrated market is growing by more than 50 percent annually1 with an expected market volume of around EUR two billion in the medium term2. This development is driven by the introduction of several major regulatory frameworks across Europe. Most notably, these include the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (“LkSG”), the EU’s Green Deal and Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (“CSRD”). At the same, increasing stakeholder pressure is also expected to drive market expansion, as ESG compliance and risk assessment becomes a “license to operate” issue for companies worldwide.
EQT Growth will partner with IntegrityNext on the next phase of its growth journey as it looks to further cement its leading position within Germany, while expanding its core product to serve upcoming European regulations. EQT Growth will bring its experience of investing throughout the tech value-chain, supported by EQT’s dedicated in-house teams of digital and sustainability experts and network of 600 advisors. Together, EQT Growth and IntegrityNext will further invest in the tech platform to support the acceleration of the product offering, and position it for long-term success.
Martin Berr-Sorokin, CEO and co-founder of IntegrityNext, said: “The critical importance of ESG is not a new concept to modern businesses. However, as a raft of regulatory frameworks – like Germany’s LkSG or the EU’s CSRD – begin to take effect, supply chain transparency and sustainability is evolving from a nice-to-have to a must-have. As more clients entrust us and we embark on our next stage of growth, we’re excited to be partnering with an experienced and hands-on investor with European roots and global scale like EQT Growth.”
Dominik Stein, Partner in the EQT Growth Investment advisory team who will join IntegrityNext’s Advisory Board, said: “IntegrityNext’s technology provides a streamlined and automated way for customers to easily monitor and certify their supply chain for ESG risks. Their cutting-edge product and large footprint in their home market of Germany positions them well to expand across Europe, as they have already built a significant proprietary supplier database. We look forward to working with Martin and the entire IntegrityNext team as they accelerate on their journey to making supply chains more transparent.”
Bitget Invests $30M in BitKeep Broadening Its Ce-DeFi Ecosystem
Bitget has announced a $30 million investment in BitKeep the decentralized multi-chain wallet, becoming its biggest stakeholder. The investment will allow the exchange to extend its range of centralized crypto services into a decentralized ecosystem. The sister companies will leverage their respective offerings and collaborate on linking CeFi and DeFi. The investment involves the merger of BitKeep Wallet with Bitget’s business domain, significantly bolstering its existing user base and product offering.
Founded in 2018, BitKeep has been providing uninterrupted and reliable non-custodial wallet, swap and NFT marketplace services to its user base of more than 8 million across 168 countries. The wallet supports 90 mainnet networks such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, BNB Chain, Polygon, and Solana, and over 250,000 types of assets across more than 20,000 dApps.
“This move is a win-win choice for Bitget and BitKeep and facilitates collaborative efforts in the decentralized space and beyond. We are not only delighted to provide the team at BitKeep with the necessary support to reinforce the security and stability of its offering services, but also excited to have such an established industry player as part of our growing ecosystem,” said Gracy Chen, Managing Director at Bitget.
As part of the deal, Bitget has invested $30 million in BitKeep, increasing its shareholding and becoming the primary stakeholder of the company valued at $300 million as per its previous funding round. The partnership with Bitget will give the wallet access to the exchange’s proven technology and security capabilities in the exchange domain, thus helping it improve the stability and security of its services.
By integrating BitKeep’s established 8 million user base, Bitget will receive access to an entirely new audience of potential clients. This is one of Bitget’s crucial moves towards Web3 which foresees linking CeFi and DeFi, transforming the platform from a leading contract exchange to a comprehensive and holistic exchange with its own ecosystem.
“The investment deal implies not only financial but also technical support, which will be provided to us by a professional team along with the experience necessary for product growth and market expansion. We are excited about this partnership and the potential it has to provide our users with even more comprehensive digital asset management services. We believe that working closely with Bitget will not only drive the growth of our business but also provide us with valuable experience exchange that will benefit our users,” said Moka Han, Chief Operating Officer at BitKeep
Established in 2018, Bitget is the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange with futures trading and copy trading services as its key features. Serving over 8 million users in more than 100 countries and regions, the exchange is committed to helping users trade smarter by providing a secure, one-stop trading solution. It also inspires individuals to embrace crypto through collaborations with credible partners, including legendary Argentinian footballer Lionel Messi, the leading Italian football team Juventus, and official eSports events organizer PGL. According to Coingecko, Bitget is currently a top 5 futures trading platform and a top 10 spot trading platform.
Five Ways Software Can Be Used for Crowdfunding
Having people support a business idea and are willing to invest in it is a great accomplishment. This is known as crowdfunding, and many entrepreneurs are turning to the internet to get the proper funding to go after their dreams. There is a wide array of crowdfunding platform software that can be used to advertise the mission and gather like-minded people together who are willing to take a chance on it. This is very beneficial for those looking to start businesses.
Using software for crowdfunding is great because it is possible to reach a larger target audience. It is no secret that the internet is growing on a daily basis. Nearly everybody uses it and discovers many new things online. Marketing the idea this way by using a platform is a great way to remain organized and to garner the right kind of attention. Word of mouth is something that begins to happen when people think an idea is worthwhile. They will start telling others about it.
When using a crowdfunding platform software, it is possible to customize the experience. Target audiences can be selected and the right messages are able to be posted to convince people that it is a worthy idea. This is great because this is what will set the business apart. In any industry, there is a lot of competition and similar ideas, but what matters most is expressing why this one is different. These platforms offer people ways to set their ideas apart.
Each time a donation is made, there is an automatic digital record of it. This is important because it holds business owners accountable. They are able to see exactly who is contributing and how much. This is also a great opportunity to send out thank you messages once the end goal has been achieved. People enjoy being noticed for their contributions and will be much more likely to follow along on the rest of the journey if they feel they are being recognized for their contributions.
Using an online platform to keep track of crowdfunding also presents a unique opportunity to offer progress updates. This not only holds business owners accountable but also shows the contributors what progress is being made. They will feel their efforts are worthwhile and that donating was a good decision. It is always nice to be kept in the loop, and it is very simple to do this when using software to organize the entire mission. This also offers a great way to stay true to a given timeline, which is very helpful in terms of productivity.
If one thing is certain, using an online platform for crowdfunding garners much more effective results than asking people to donate individually. For one, it takes far less time to put out a mass message to potential contributors than seeking out people and messaging them one by one. This is just one example of how technology helps entrepreneurs regularly. Taking advantage of these platforms is recommended for any aspiring business owners out there who need a little help to get the idea off the ground.
Crowdfunding is a newfound way to get extra help when it is needed. Many entrepreneurs use it and are successful with it regularly. It is simple to begin using a platform to organize these efforts and keep track of all the progress being made. People like knowing what their contributions are going toward, so being given a tangible way to track this is very valuable. It is a beneficial method that yields great results.
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