Special Report: The strength of PLY’s industry partnerships further consolidates its standing as Australia’s leading games developer, competing directly on the world stage.

Shares in Australian games development company PlaySide Studios (ASX:PLY) rose this morning, after the company announced an important new development and marketing agreement.

The company has inked a deal with Click Management, a multi-channel gaming entertainment company that manages a roster of global gaming influencers who collectively drive more than 700 million pageviews per month.

Under the terms of the deal, PlaySide will get exclusive rights to build and develop a new game for PC users.

In turn, two of Click’s leading influencers — LazarBeam and Fresh – will market and promote the game through their respective online platforms.

LazarBeam (Lannan Eacott) runs his own globally recognised gaming channel where he provides coverage and analysis of famous titles such as Fortnite and Minecraft.

As a measure of his leverage in the market, Eacott’s YouTube channel has more than 18m subscribers. He has a further 2.4m followers on Instagram and most of his YouTube videos garner view counts of between 5m and 15m each.

Fresh (Harley Fresh) will expand PlaySide’s presence on Twitch, the world’s leading online gaming platform, where he built a huge global audience as one of the top Fortnite players and was recently named Twitch Streamer of the Year.

Fresh also has 7.1m YouTube subscribers and generates an average of around 60m pageviews per month.

Real market traction

The agreement with Click is reflective of PlaySide’s knowledge of the market, and its ability to leverage the world’s largest media channels to drive distribution.

PlaySide will work with its partners in the production process and take creative control for all of the game’s programming including art, sound and design.

PLY’s two influencer partners will then make key announcements across their dedicated social media platforms prior to the launch.

Both gamers will also provide “launch streams, YouTube mentions and gameplay streams on launch date”, PlaySide said.

In addition, “LazarBeam & Fresh will continue to regularly promote and market the game post launch”.

The deal mark’s PlaySide’s first major distribution partnership since the company listed in December.

Investors have already responded positively to the company’s value proposition, sending the stock more than 100 per cent higher from its listing price of 20c.

Following today’s announcement, PLY shares rose by around 10pc in morning trade to 44c.

All groups involved in the deal expressed optimism about PlaySide’s capacity to compete on the world stage as an Australian-based games developer.

“This is more than a marketing partnership, it is an opportunity to develop a game alongside LazarBeam and Fresh especially for their audience,” PlaySide CEO Gerry Sakkas said.

LazarBeam, who is also Australian-based, said he’s keen to leverage his 18m-strong YouTube network to bring locally developed games to a global audience.

“To be able to partner with a best-in-class Australian studio and create a game people are going to love all around the world is awesome,” he said.

Sakkas added that the strength of PLY’s industry partnerships is proof that the company was created “for gamers, by gamers”.

“It is also an opportunity to further advance Playside as the leading gaming studio in the country and further progress our global credentials,” Sakkas said.

This article was developed in collaboration with Playside Studios, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.