‘Astronomical’ opportunity: Illuvium-based crypto gaming guild Polemos raises US$14m at $100m valuation
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Venture capital firms are showing no signs of stopping throwing money into the extremely hot GameFi sector.
The latest to raise capital is Polemos, which announced yesterday it had closed a US$14 million seed round at a US$100 million fully-diluted valuation, making it one of the fastest-growing entrants into the crypto guild space.
Its rivals include Yield Guild Games, Crypto Gaming United, Balthazar, Perion DAO, Avacado Guild and a host of others that are attempting to take advantage of opportunities in the play-to-earn gaming space.
Typically these guilds provide “scholars” (mostly players in developing countries) with the NFTs needed to win play-to-earn games in return for a share of their loot.
Polemos said it would distinguish itself from other guilds by leveraging “the years of experience amassed by thousands of sophisticated gamers,” and pass that knowledge down the line.
It said Polemos would be marketplace, guild and university, governed by a Polemos token that’ll be released for a public sale in the coming months.
One per cent of all revenues from tokens will be donated by a foundation to support the local communities of the guild members.
The guild will first focus on the opportunities in Illuvium, the PC and Mac play-to-earn PC game founded by Sydney brothers Kieran and Aaron Warwick set for release this year. It’ll also support crypto games MonkeyLeague and Fancy Birds.
The guild is officially based in Singapore but many work remotely. Chief executive Sascha Zehe is based in Germany while chief technology officer Richard McClaren, a former McKinsey & Co vice president, is Sydney-based.
“Polemos’ vision is to become one of the world’s leading DAOs and bring tens of millions of global digital asset providers and gamers together inside a unified GameFi ecosystem,” Zehe said in the announcement.
“With the growth of our platform, we expect to soon see thousands of guild members playing the most popular play-to-earn games.
“By bridging esports and DeFi communities, we will revolutionise gaming and create opportunities that have never been seen before.”
Notable investors included Delphi Digital, QCP, Framework Ventures, Golden Tree, IOSG Ventures and LD Capital, as well as the founders of COTI, Tokemak, Sushiswap and Altered State Machine.
“The opportunity in front of a GameFi DAO such as Polemos is astronomical, and we have strong confidence in their ability to build one of the most successful GameFi platforms globally,” said Delphi Digital partner Yan Liberman, who noted the venture capital firm also invested in Polemos’ pre-seed round.
“We think blockchain gaming is going to be the largest top of funnel opportunity for onboarding new users into crypto, and the gaming guild model will play a huge role in shaping these new communities,” said Framework Ventures co-founder Michael Anderson.
“In Web3, games are only as strong as their player base, and we believe Polemos will supercharge important games like Illuvium by participating in governance, increasing player access, and building competitive e-sports teams that will drive eyes and players towards these ecosystems.”
One of Polemos’ co-founders is Hong Kong-based Tom Hall, the chief executive of The Sporting News and the non-executive chairman of AsianLogic Group, an investor and operator in online and land-based gambling in Asia.
“As one of the largest online betting and customer support platforms in the world, Asianlogic has a unique insight into emerging trends around the mobilisation and deployment of online wealth,” Hall said.
“Further, at The Sporting News, we see the convergence between sports, esports, and new forms of blockchain gaming, as well as ever-increasing user demand for news and information relating to NFTs and NFT games.
“We are excited about the opportunity to provide some of our staff, partners, and readers with access to opportunities to grow their wealth and education through Polemos.”