NEW YORK – 21st Century Fox has invested US$100m in fledgling social broadcasting platform Caffeine, funding the creation of a studios division focused on eSports, video games and entertainment content.
Fox has led a funding round in the platform, which revolves around gaming, entertainment and other creative content, while existing investors Andreessen Horowitz and Greylock Partners have also put in more money along with other undisclosed partners.
The US$100m from Fox has gone to both Caffeine and a newly formed venture called Caffeine Studios, which is jointly owned by Fox Sports and Caffeine.
The studio will leverage Fox Sports’ expertise in live events and programming to create eSports, video game, sports, and live entertainment content for Caffeine’s social broadcasting platform.
Lachlan Murdoch, 21st Century Fox’s executive chairman, will join Caffeine’s board following the investment. The stakes will be part of the proposed new Fox company formed upon completion of the sale of other 21st Century Fox assets to the Walt Disney Company. Murdoch has already been confirmed as chairman and CEO of that new-look Fox business.
Currently in a pre-release phase ahead of its official launch, Caffeine brings gamers and fans together, with users finding content through the people they follow in their social circles and friend groups.
The platform has also announced a content agreement with US-based events promoter Live Nation to bring live music concerts to Caffeine in the final quarter of 2018.
Caffeine CEO Ben Keighran said: “We want to bring the world together around friends and live broadcasts. It’s an ambitious goal, but one we believe is attainable with the support of our amazing new partners, our awesome and ever-growing community and the content that, together, we can bring onto the platform.”
Murdoch added: “The combination of the Caffeine platform with a content studio that benefits from Fox Sports’ expertise in live events and programming will help position Caffeine to deliver compelling experiences in eSports, video gaming and entertainment.”