Danish esports organization Astralis, now operating under the name Astralis Group, will be going public on Nasdaq’s Copenhagen exchange on December 9th. They will be the first esports organization to launch an initial public offering (IPO). Astralis is an extremely successful Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team, while the Astralis Group organization also owns League of Legends squad Origen and FIFA team Future FC.
The Astralis Group is expecting to raise between $18-22 million USD with their December 9th listing. CEO Nikolaj Nyholm explains that $8 million in pre-commitments have come from a variety of European and Asian investors. “We believe that the foundation of some of the most valuable and iconic brands in 10 years’ time is being set today,” says Nyholm. A recent report states that the Astralis Group has received pre-commitments from 41 investors, and the Group's offering of new shares was oversubscribed by 77.55% due to overwhelming orders during the subscription period.
“We’re overwhelmed by the way the IPO has been received and we look forward to welcoming all new shareholders into the Astralis Group family,” says Nyholm. “Being pioneers, we’re building on a strong foundation and this IPO enables us to invest further in building the world’s strongest esports media brands. We look forward to a continued dialogue with all shareholders and will work hard to reach the expectations and our potential.”
Astralis was founded in 2016 by the former Team SoloMid CS:GO roster, which housed legendary core Nicolai “device” Reedtz, Andreas “Xyp9x” Højsleth, and Peter “dupreeh” Rasmussen. The team is widely considered to be the single best Counter-Strike team of all time, having won numerous tournaments since their adoption of the Astralis name. They won their first CS:GO Major in 2017 shortly after signing in-game leader Lukas “Gla1ve” Rossander to the active roster. Though they didn’t find much consistent success that year, the squad would emerge in 2018 as the most dominant force in the game.
Astralis kicked off 2018 with a group stage elimination from the Eleague Boston Major, followed by rifler Markus “Kjaerbye” Kjærbye leaving the team. After their signing of Emil “Magisk” Reif, the team skyrocketed to the top of the scene. Astralis won ten top-tier LAN events that year, including the FACEIT London Major. Their dominance continued into 2019, where they won the IEM Katowice Major, and later made history by winning StarLadder Berlin - their third Major victory in a row. The team’s most recent results include victories at IEM Beijing and the ECS Season 8 Finals. Astralis is currently ranked as the best CS:GO team in the world.
The esports industry should generate $1 billion in revenue in 2019, and is expected to double that by 2022. Forbes has named Cloud9 and Team SoloMid as the most valuable esports companies, each standing at $400 million. Team Liquid takes the third spot at $320 million.