Simplicity Esports acquires PLAYlive Nation gaming centre in Florida

Simplicity Esports and Gaming Company announced an agreement with one of its franchisees to acquire all of the assets of the PLAYlive Nation esports gaming centre St. Petersburg, Florida.

PLAYlive Nation was acquired by and merged with Simplicity Gaming in 2019. The franchisee-run esports gaming centre, located in St. Petersburg’s Tyrone Square Mall, first opened in 2017.

Playlive Nation Simplicity Esports
Image credit: PLAYlive Nation

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The franchise owner will receive 29,504 shares of restricted Simplicity Esports common stock in exchange for the location including furniture, fixtures, equipment, inventory, and customer list. The current staff will keep their jobs.

In a release, Simplicity Esports explained that the acquisition of franchisee-owned esports gaming centres allows it to report the full revenues generated by the gaming centres on a consolidated basis. Previously, Simplicity Esports only reported the franchise royalty fee, calculated as 6 percent of gross sales, paid by franchisees.

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Roman Franklin, President of Simplicity Esports, commented: “This is our second acquisition in the last week and we expect to continue executing our strategy of acquiring franchisee-owned locations while simultaneously signing new or amended leases with significantly improved terms. Our renegotiated lease agreement with this landlord requires us to pay rent as a percentage of gross sales along with a small fixed payment for taxes and maintenance. St. Petersburg becomes the sixth corporate-owned gaming centre in our growing nationwide footprint.”

Franklin went on to add that the city of St. Petersburg is home to over 265,000 residents, of which over 66,000 are under the age of 24.

Esports Insider says: Simplicity Gaming is taking an interesting route to building an audience—give them somewhere to gather and play. The acquisition of PLAYlive Nation last year gave Simplicity access to 44 gaming centres that reportedly serve over 150,000 unique customers. The pandemic isn’t helping in-person events, but it’s not helping retail, either, so it’s not surprising that a landlord would jump at some steady income. Also, purchasing the location from the franchisee allows Simplicity to reap all the benefits and keep that income flowing.

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