Denmark-based North Esports has ceased operations in the industry after Parken Sport & Entertainment (PS&E) and Nordisk Film chose to stop funding the organization after a mere four years. The investing companies will be focusing on their core businesses after this move.
The news came from an official tweet from North, as translated from the Danish news website they had linked to. In the release, it’s stated that their closure is due to the COVID-19 pandemic severely affecting industries across the globe. Even with tournaments moving online, the travel restrictions and event organization prohibitions seem to have put North in a tougher-than-anticipated spot.
In the Danish press release, the chairman of North and director of Parken Sport & Entertainment Lars Bo Jeppesen thanked everyone who was with them in their journey. “We are of course sorry that we now have to close the Danish-based e-sports company North, which has left a nice mark on international e-sports.”
Lars further added that given the significant investments required to run the operations of North, they had been scouting for co-investors, which they had unfortunately failed to close a deal with.
“We have searched the market for co-investors to take on board for the project, but have not found any. To continue the operations of North and establish it as a sustainable venture, we need large, continued investments, which is not possible at the time. We owe a responsibility to our overall business, and therefore, our focus will now be on our core business in FC Copenhagen, Parken and Lalandia, just as Nordisk Film will focus on its large core and growth businesses.”
Lars Bo Jeppesen went on to reiterate the uncertainty of the ongoing pandemic especially in terms of customer acquisition. “There is still potential in e-sports and gaming, but the opportunities are uncertain,” Lars added. According to the investors’ assessments, COVID-19 has made an already hard-to-establish-in market nearly impossible for them. “Both esports and the sports industry as a whole have been hit hard financially,” he said.
Chairman of Parken Sport & Entertainment Bo Rygaard and CEO of Nordisk Film Allan Mathson Hansen were both grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with each other. ”As owners of North, Nordisk Film, and Parken Sport & Entertainment, we have both been happy with the collaboration and will, in the future, see each other as potential partners in new projects… We would like to thank all the people and partners who have made a great effort around North over the past four years,” they said.
North Esports had three game divisions under their wing: Apex Legends, FIFA, and CS:GO. North’s CS:GO and Apex Legends teams are now free agents, while their FIFA division is acquired by F.C. Copenhagen – the club being run under the aegis of PS&E – to compete in the eSuperliga.
North had been on shaky ground since their formation in 2017, with not much to show for in the industry. They had rebranded themselves at one point, alongside establishing many brand partnerships to stay afloat, but of course, those moves have proven to be insufficient in the current scenario.