Wall Street heavyweights get exposure to open metaverse through $500m investment in Animoca Brands
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Animoca Brands is showing no signs of slowing down in 2022, raising more funds from institutional investors at a valuation more than double that of its last capital raising just three months ago.
The gaming, metaverse and NFT company announced overnight that it had raised US$358,888,888 (A$500 million) at a US$5 billion (A$6.95 billion) pre-money valuation, with New York-based Liberty City Ventures leading the raise.
Liberty City was also an investor in Animoca Brands’ last capital raising, in October, when the Hong Kong-headquartered, Australian-incorporated company raised US$65 million at a US$2.2 billion valuation.
“The trailblazing Animoca Brands is demonstrating to the world the game-changing characteristics of Web3 and the open metaverse,” said Liberty City Ventures managing partner Murtaza Akbar.
“Animoca Brands is championing a more decentralised, open, fairer, and more inclusive future where everyone can truly own their digital goods and benefit from them accordingly.
“We are extremely proud to be working with Yat Siu (Animoca Brands co-founder and executive chairman) and his world-class team to build the future of asset ownership and management.”
Other investors included George Soros’ Soros Fund Management; Dan Taperio’s 10T Holdings, Adrian Cheng’s C Ventures; Gobi Partners, Alibaba’s investment arm; Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss’ Gemini Frontier Fund and Winklevoss Capital; Sequioa China; and Smile Group, one of the leading internet groups in India and Southeast Asia.
“Smile is proud to partner with a visionary like Yat Siu and his team,” said Harish Bahl, chief executive and founder of Smile Group.
“We share his vision of Web3, where true digital property rights will unleash creativity, economic value and entrepreneurship, globally.”
“The delivery of digital property rights might well be one of the most powerful ideas of the 21st century,” said Manuel Stotz, founder and chief executive of Kingsway Capital.
“What started 13 years ago with the launch of Bitcoin has proven to be the beginning of a new era in which digital ownership is embedded in the internet, powered by decentralised blockchains.
“Gaming might well hold the key to mass adoption of blockchain technology, and Animoca Brands is perhaps the best positioned company in this space globally. In terms of emerging and frontier markets, where adoption is orders of magnitude faster than in the developed world, Animoca Brands has already had a tremendous impact on the way people live, play and earn.”
The raise involved selling 111,173,515 new shares at subscription price of $4.50 a share – 25 times the 18c price Animoca Brands AB1 shares were changing hands at 22 months ago, when the company was delisted from the ASX.
If Animoca Brands was still listed, its US$5 billion (A$6.9 billion) market cap would put the Company among the ASX’s top 100 companies — more valuable than JB Hi-Fi (ASX:JBH).
Even that US$5 billion valuation could be a bargain, considering Animoca Brands’ token stash was worth US$15.9 billion at the end of November. The market has corrected somewhat but it’s still a very valuable war chest.
“We believe we are still at the initial stages of a new internet revolution, and there are tremendous opportunities ahead of us in 2022 and beyond,” Siu said.
This comes as early backer and long-time corporate advisor Simon Doherty joins the Company as a Vice President, where he’ll continue to advise Animoca Brands on capital markets and corporate initiatives on a full-time basis.
This article was developed in collaboration with Animoca Brands, 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.