Australian esports organisation Tainted Minds has been acquired by private investors and will rebrand as ICON Esports.
Relocating its headquarters to Sydney, the organisation will have management based in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Adelaide to give it a “true national presence”.
Nick Bobir, Founder of Tainted Minds commented on the acquisition in a statement: “I am extremely excited that we can take our fans, players and partners on a journey to the next chapter of our story and also be involved in the evolution of our business. Having watched the landscape go through some big changes over the past five years, we understand the importance of adapting and scaling with that market growth.
“ICON embodies and represents our strive to deliver great things to not only our fans and communities but also our players and staff. Stay tuned for a few exciting announcements coming out over the next month.”
Those who have invested in the acquisition of Tainted Minds are Raymond Burke, Chairman of Highlanders Super Rugby, Edward Abbot, CEO of QMS Sport, Mathew Davey, Founder & CEO of Ticketdirect, Nathan Taylor, Managing Director for Capital Markets at Commonwealth Bank, and Adrian Whittingham, Executive Director of Pinnacle Investment Management.
Adrian Whittingham, Investor at ICON Esports added: “The new ownership group has a strong track record in building businesses and is committed to the strategy and vision of ICON. We have seen outstanding brands such as Cloud9 and Liquid be high performers with their teams as well as establishing other business initiatives to build their brand and community. Whilst we recognise Asia-Pacific is a smaller market, ICON has a clear strategy to become a leading esports firm in the region.”
The organisation announced its departure from Call of Duty – a game it had been active in since 2015 – on February 18th after failing to qualify for the Call of Duty World League. “With significant changes to the format at both an international and national level, we have made the executive decision to not re-sign the current Call of Duty roster and signal our exit from the title for 2019,” the announcement read.
As things stand, the organisation still fields teams in CS:GO, PUBG, Rocket League, Fortnite, and Overwatch. It has also signed a number of content creators and is partnered with Turtle Beach, Ribs & Burgers, SCUG Gaming, and ZQRacing.
Esports Insider says: There’s a lot of opportunity in esports as a whole but especially in regions that haven’t quite seen the same the level of development as North America and Asia, for example. As Oceanic esports grows, a number of organisations will grow with it and ICON Esports will evidently be looking to get in on that.