eSports company Emerge Gaming (ASX:EM1) had a market-moving update this morning, announcing the offical launch of its ArcadeX tournament platform into South Africa.

The launch was done in conjunction with video streaming platform Worldplay — a partnership which Emerge says will provide it with an integrated distribution network to multiple mobile network operators (MNOs) in the South African market.

In turn, the company estimated it would gain potential access to more than 80 million mobile subscribers.

The deal marks another step in a concerted effort by Emerge to push into the African market, after it joined the ASX boards last year in a $5m backdoor listing via Arrowhead Resources.

It’s connected the ArcadeX platform with a number of telecommunications networks across the continent, most recently with the MTN Nigeria network in November.

The company’s stock price also got a boost when it announced a deal with the African division of Viacom in July, although its shares have remained largely unchanged in the second half of the year.

Emerge said its core strategy was to leverage mobile customer networks from different MNOs to generate paying subscribers to its multi-game ArcadeX platform.

The company’s 4C filing for the September quarter showed it booked no cash receipts from customers, and as at September 30 had $2.822m cash in the bank.

For the 2019 financial year, it booked $102,579 in operating revenue, with another $192,454 generated from interest income and R&D tax credits.

For its South African launch, Emerge said it also engaged digital marketing company Tiburon Media to develop “revenue generating leads at a targeted cost per acquisition”.

The news pushed shares up nearly 31 per cent on Thursday morning.


In other ASX tech news today:

There was another gaming announcement, as tournament platform Esports Mogul (ASX:ESH) revealed it had entered a strategic partnership with South-East Asian gaming company Mineski Global. The partnership is aimed at the regional market of around 200 million gamers, Mogul said, with the company to retain “50 per cent of tournament, event, and sponsorship revenue earned”. Shares in ESH were unchanged at 0.9c.

And buy now, pay later (BNPL) platform Zip Co (ASX:Z1P) welcomed the announcement of a BNPL industry Code of Practice, scheduled to be released in January next year.