From Jay-Z to Jon Bon Jovi, big name musicians becoming part owners of sports teams is nothing new. However, when it comes to esports, celebrity ownership is just getting started. In a tweet earlier this week, pop star Post Malone officially confirmed that he’s become a co-owner of ENVY Gaming.
ENVY Gaming is the company that owns Team Envy, Dallas Fuel from the Call of Duty League, and Dallas Empire of the Overwatch League. Although the deal was brokered by Malone’s representatives from London Entertainment Group, Electric Feel Entertainment, and United Talent Agency, Malone grew up in Texas as an avid gamer, so business aside, he has a personal interest in getting involved with the Dallas-based esports organization.
According to an article from The Verge, Post Malone’s recent acquisition was for an “undisclosed equity stake.” Considering the fact that since its founding in 2007, ENVY Gaming has grown into what their website calls, “one of the largest and most-winning esports groups in the world,” the deal is a big one. If anything, Malone levelling up in terms of the business side of the gaming industry is to be expected. He’s already an established ambassador for HyperX and even streams Call of Duty: Warzone and PUBG.
With many gamers and streamers gaining the same sort of following that pop stars do, it makes sense that a pop star would be well suited to crossover. He’s in good company. Post Malone has musical peers who are also invested in esports. Drake, for example, is an investor with the 100 Thieves gaming group, Offset is an investor with FaZe Clan, and The Weeknd has invested in the esports streaming company Overactive Media.
Considering how Twitch streaming records were broken when Drake joined Ninja for a few games of Fortnite, the investments of pop stars in gaming are likely to pay dividends. More than just allowing musicians to access new and younger prospective fans, the ability to host virtual concerts in Fortnite—something particularly valuable in the age of Covid—it’s clear that established industries are only starting to recognize the full potential present in the gaming industry. At the same time, the burgeoning esports industry is sure to learn something about monetization from the old guard of the music industry.
Post Malone seems to have made a very savvy business decision that, for him, is also rooted in his own personal interest and passion for gaming, as well as his ties to the Dallas based company he’s now the part owner of. Money aside, it would seem that Post Malone is winning the game.