Jakarta-based media company IDN Media acquired Indonesian e-sports media platform GGWP.ID, according to an announcement made by the firm’s CEO Winston Utama on his Facebook page. Utama did not share details regarding the size of the deal.
The founder of GGWP.ID, Ricky Setiawan, will keep his role CEO after the acquisition.
This move marks IDN Media’s entry to the country’s e-sport space. IDN Media itself is a media startup with multiple sub-brands, with content focusing on millennials and Gen Z. In January, the company raised an undisclosed Series C funding round led by EV Growth.
Although still a relatively young trend in Southeast Asia, e-sports has a promising future in the region.
According to research by Niko Partners, the number of PC and mobile gamers in Southeast Asia will rise to a staggering 400 million, accumulating a combined revenue of USD 4.4 billion USD by 2021. The nations that will see the most rapid growth in e-sports are Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam.
E-sports related businesses in the region have been attracting funds from a number of VC firms lately.
In March, Indonesia-based e-sport organization EVOS raised USD 3.8 million in a Series A funding round from undisclosed investors from Indonesia and Singapore. Go-Ventures, an investment arm from Indonesian tech unicorn Go-Jek, invested USD 35.5 million in Indian e-sport startup Mobile Premier League (MPL) in March. Shortly after, the gaming startup was launched in Indonesia.
A number of major tournaments also contributes to the increasing popularity and interest of e-sport in Southeast Asia. E-sports were part of the 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia and will feature again in the upcoming Asian Games 2022.
A number of large companies also showed their enthusiasm to become part of e-sports hype, including Tokopedia with its Tokopedia Indonesia E-sports National Championship (IENC). Go-Jek also has sponsored various competitions including the PUBG Mobile Indonesia National Championship (PINC) 2019.
Through this acquisition, IDN Media says it aims to make GGWP.ID the “ESPN of e-sports” in Indonesia.
IDN times typically gets more than 40 million visitors per months on its main website IDNtimes.com, according to Similarweb. Some of its top videos on Youtube have millions or hundreds of thousands of views.