We know Drake likes Fortnite: he’s one of the highest-profile musicians to play (and stream video of it) online, with gaming star Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins. And we know Drake likes investing in the games world: in October 2018 he chipped in to a funding round for esports startup 100 Thieves, along with artist-manager Scooter Braun.
Now Drake is putting his money into another startup called Players’ Lounge. Its service is a cross between esports and gambling: the idea is that gamers sign up, deposit some cash, and then play games including Fortnite, Apex Legends, FIFA 19 and Madden NFL 19 against other players, matched to their skill level, to win cash. Or lose it, of course.
The company has just raised $3m of funding, with Drake joining former Google / Yahoo exec Marissa Mayer and former BMG and Take-Two Interactive exec Strauss Zelnick – for background on his history with the music industry, read this piece by the way.
“Before Players’ Lounge there were only two clear ways to make money playing video games: 1. Going pro, which is basically being the Lebron James of your favorite game, or 2. Become a Twitch streamer, which is more reliant on one’s charisma than gaming acumen,” wrote co-founder Austin Woolridge in a blog post announcing the funding. “Now, anyone above the age of 18 years old. — from college students to 9–5 office workers — can make money playing video games using Players’ Lounge.”