Singapore-based media company, Spout Entertainment Group, has secured a seed investment of $2.1 million (S$2.93 million) from Reapra Investment Holdings (Reapra Group).
Spout Entertainment is led by CEO Daryl Teo,.
Reapra Group is a venture builder founded by CEO Shuhei Morofuji, a former entrepreneur who exited his healthcare company, SMS, through a public listing on the Tokyo bourse. Morofuji and Reapra’s CFO, Takeo Matsuda, will join Spout’s Board of Directors. Teo has sat on Reapra’s 5-Seat Investment Committee since November 2016.
Spout Entertainment Group, is a Singapore-based entrepreneurial venture that owns Spout360.com, a media firm with ambitions of becoming the largest e-sports network in Southeast Asia. It also runs Spout Agency, an e-sports influencer agency helping teams, athletes and ‘shoutcasters’ acquire and manage brand sponsorships; and Cite, an online education company with proprietary video-streaming technology in emerging economies like Myanmar and the Philippines.
According to Teo, part of the proceeds from this investment will be focused on funding expansion in Myanmar, where Spout will commit an initial $600,000 to provide free education resources to the local community.
All pre-recorded videos and live streaming will be rendered via Spout’s Content Management Platform which translates, transcribes and smart-renders video files, in real-time. The company is currently in partnership talks with regional content creators to distribute Spout’s video-processing capabilities.
In an email exchange with DEALSTREETASIA, Teo explained that the firm was focused on ‘solving the industry pain points and pursuing profitability’, as part of a larger agenda to make e-sports in Southeast Asia a sustainable ecosystem.
“Investors can expect ownership of an asset which represents the future of millennials, with a proven, exponentially-growing and highly lucrative business model exemplified by traditional sports like Soccer and Basketball,” Teo said.
Claiming to be the fastest growing e-sports company in the region, Teo highlighted the potential for expanding into adjacent content industries due to the company’s proprietary video-processing capabilities, with e-learning a specific focus of the firm due to its potential in further serving the millennial customer segment. This is due to what the firm perceives as a “more vicarious and experiential way of learning,” from this segment, he said.
“As Spout progresses towards profitability, we will explore subsequent opportunities in a Pre-Series A fundraising round with an eventual IPO. That being said, Spout provides crucial solutions for the e-sports industry and we have had interest from more mature conglomerates in the gaming and media space. We assure all our followers, affectionately referred to by our community as “Spouters”, that we will continue to appraise incoming offers and all avenues with the best interests of all Spouters and the regional Southeast Asia gaming community at heart,” he added.
He noted that M&A would be part of its growth strategy as it scaled in the region: “Just like in South Korea, US and Europe, we dream of a future where aspiring professional gamers, game ‘shoutcasters’ and everyone who is passionate about gaming, can have the peace of mind to pursue a career in e-sports in Southeast Asia. To do that, we have identified key areas in the current ecosystem which require more infrastructure and support. Spout will fill these gaps either by partnering with global heavyweights such as ESL from Germany and Abios from Sweden, or we will invest heavily and build from scratch,” he said.