In 2020, the mobile gaming market saw unprecedented growth with a 46 percent increase in gamers and a 46.5 percent market share of the entire US$158 billion global gaming industry. As the proliferation of accessible and engaging mobile games continues, it’s clear this industry should see significant growth.
In North America alone, mobile gaming content market values could reach over US$29.1 billion by 2022, a fraction of the total market value considering the overwhelming popularity of free-to-play mobile gaming throughout the world. Companies taking advantage of evolutions in brand partnerships and strategic acquisitions give investors fantastic exposure to this exponentially growing space and a chance to make it to the top of the mobile gaming leaderboard.
East Side Games (TSX:EAGR) is the largest free-to-play mobile game company in Canada publicly traded on the TSXV exchange. The company currently has ten games in its portfolio with plans for expansion. To this accord, in Q2 2022, East Side Games announced its planned management succession process that’s strategically designed to optimize the company’s interests, naming Jason Bailey, former chief revenue officer, as CEO.
Bailey says, "This is an incredibly exciting time for ESGG. We are an emerging leader in the mobile games industry. We have grown the core team to over 200 people, with well over 200 more working exclusively on our games through our many partner studios. We are working with many of the world's biggest brands, on some of the most beloved television and movie properties in the world. As CEO, I am committed to enable creators to successfully deliver mobile gaming experiences that players engage with every day."
Since its inception in 2018, the company has worked towards scaling its decentralized organization and executing on its 3 core pillars of revenue growth. East Side Games’ three core growth pillars are portfolio and products, technology platforms, such as IdleKit, and mergers and acquisitions for growth and revenue consolidation. East Side Games Group studios include East Side Games and LDRLY Games.
East Side Games Group has been quick to establish strong brand partnerships with the likes of Archer, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and, most recently, the RuPaul’s Drag Race franchise. In early 2021, the company announced an upcoming intellectual property (IP) partnership with the RuPaul brand in creating a free-to-play mobile game that is the first of its kind in the LGBTQ space.
The IdleKit technology platform also provides exceptional high-margin software as a service (SaaS) revenue possibilities and distributed growth upside. East Side Games Group has brought on five new IdleKit partners since the beginning of 2021, including BigFoot Gaming out of South America, and Mighty Kingdom (ASX:MKL), the biggest independent game developer in Australia.
With the establishment of several significant global IP partnerships in the works, the company continues to cast a wider net and geographic footprint in the rapidly expanding mobile gaming market.
East Side Games Group leverages an early-mover advantage as one of only two free-to-play public companies in Canada. Its impressive C$330 million market cap, robust financial platform and expert mergers and acquisition strategies establish the company’s position as a dominant player in the growing Canadian and international market.
East Side Games Group’s management team brings together unparalleled media and gaming expertise and a proven entrepreneurial vision. With over 150 years of combined experience across mergers and acquisitions, finance, tech and gaming industries, this leadership primes East Side Games Group for exceptional organic growth and expansion potential.
- The company has a robust game portfolio and product pillar, which engages key IP partnerships with notable brands like Trailer Park Boys, Cheech and Chong, and the upcoming RuPaul’s Drag Race franchise partnership to create an innovative game catered for the LGBTQ space.
- As the company advances in Q2 2022, it announced its planned management transition plan that’s designed to optimize the company’s interests.
- Its IdleKit technology platform leverages strategic partnerships for expansive distributed growth and high-margin SaaS revenue and royalty opportunities.
- East Side Games Group is an early-mover in the underrepresented Canadian gaming market. It stands as a small-to-mid market consolidator of various gaming studios.
- The company aims to leverage Canada’s brilliant gaming talent and become a top free-to-play gaming company globally.
- The company has a management team with proven media and gaming expertise and entrepreneurial vision to get East Side Games Group to the top in mobile and free-to-play in Canada and international markets.
- East Side Games Group entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Truly Social Games (TSG), an innovative developer and publisher of mobile games headquartered in Vancouver, BC.
Gaming Portfolio & Product Pillar
East Side Games Group currently has ten games in its robust gaming portfolio, with other developments in the pipeline. Its well-established studios, East Side Games and LDRLY Games, offer a compelling portfolio of games, developed and published in-house or through IP partnerships and acquisitions. These studios utilize an innovative data-driven process to enhance the retention of their games throughout their lifetime.
East Side Games Group focuses on long lifecycle games with narrative-driven emphasis to increase loyal IP-linked fan bases and stable revenues. The company currently has several game and branded partnerships in the works, including an exciting RuPaul’s Drag Race franchise branded game to open doors into untapped markets and highly prospective gamer spaces.
The IdleKit technology platform offers East Side Games Group high-margin SaaS revenue and royalty possibilities. The platform works to complement organic portfolio revenue generation with in-app purchases, advertising, and margin expansion potential with recurring platform expansion to drive gross margin improvements.
IdleKit includes key partnerships like Mighty Kingdom, BigFoot Gaming, Game Masons and more. In December 2020, the company accomplished a non-IP fantasy game soft launch, with a built-in partnership with Truly Social Games, which could see significant acquisition letter of intent (LOI). Developers seek to benefit from this platform’s seamless compatibility with Unity and reduced developer risk.
Jason Bailey - CEO
Jason Bailey is a founder of East Side Games, and was appointed CEO on April 13, 2022. He is considered one of Canada’s most experienced gaming entrepreneurs. Prior to East Side Games, Bailey was a founder of Super Rewards, a social game monetization platform which helped pioneer the free to play game model that is ubiquitous today, which he then sold in 2009. During his career, he has been a mentor to, and investor in, a variety of Canadian startups and technology companies. Bailey has over 20 years of senior executive experience building successful companies and brands spanning Asia, Europe, and North America. He has a proven track record in senior leadership roles at IMG Canada, now Endeavor, Logic Technologie, JT International, and MASEV Communications, later acquired by IMG Canada. His experience spans corporate, agency, and entrepreneurial environments across free-to-play mobile games, FinTech, e-sports, blockchain, digital marketing and media, and sports and entertainment industries.
Jim MacCallum - CFO
Jim MacCallum is a chartered professional accountant and chartered financial analyst with over 20 years of experience. Most recently, MacCallum was the senior vice president of finance and acting CFO at Westport Fuel Systems. Previously, he held senior roles at Amica Mature Lifestyles, Absolute Software, and Cisco Systems. MacCallum has extensive capital markets, acquisitions, and international experience, having worked for four years in California and two years in Russia. MacCallum articled with KPMG in Vancouver, British Columbia, and completed the advanced management program at Harvard Business School.
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