Splyce Inc., an Excell portfolio company, has agreed to be acquired by Toronto’s OverActive Media Group. The deal propels OAM to become one of a handful of organizations in the world to hold a franchise in two premiere leagues—League of Legends and OverWatch. By merging with Splyce, OAM is now a global leader in the esports industry with more than 200 million viewers that is expected to outpace revenue from traditional sports in the coming years.
Splyce will retain its management and operations in Rochester, N.Y., becoming a wholly- owned subsidiary of OAM.
Excell was among the first investors in Splyce, which was founded in 2015. Excell’s investment was funded by New York Ventures’ Minority and Women-owned Business Investment Fund.
“Splyce’s excellent management team and deep industry knowledge compelled Excell to be its first professional investor,” said Rami Katz, chief operating officer of Excell. “Excell’s investment in Splyce was made possible by the Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s fund established specifically for minority/women-led high-tech businesses.”
Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “New York Ventures is proud to support minority and women-owned tech businesses, and its investment in Splyce, through Excell Partners, is a success story that’s led to Splyce’s acquisition by OverActive Media Group and will grow the esports industry in Rochester.”
Since its inception, Splyce has established itself as a home to top-level teams across multiple esports titles worldwide. It includes teams in League of Legends, Call of Duty, Rocket League, StarCraft II, Halo, Smite and Paladins with championships across five titles.
“Excell was a tremendous resource to Splyce from the start; we would not have been able to acquire our first esports team without Excell,” said Marty Strenczewilk, CEO of Splyce. “In addition to funds, Excell was with us every step of the way, helping negotiate partnerships, set strategy and serve as a trusted advisor in tough times.”
Excell is a VC fund that invests in seed and early stage high-tech startups in Upstate New York, with the dual mission of generating investor returns and supporting economic development and job creation. Excell’s Portfolio includes investments in medical device, materials, energy, biotech, agtech, imaging, and IT/software ventures across New York State. In 2018, Excell was chosen to manage the $25 million Finger Lakes Forward Venture Capital Fund (FLX Fund) to provide early-venture stage capital investments for startup companies in key high-tech industries. More information is available here.
New York Ventures is the venture capital investment arm of Empire State Development, New York State’s chief economic development agency. New York Ventures meets the critical capital needs of the state’s innovation economy by providing funding to high- growth startups as they move from concept to commercialization, through early growth and expansion. More information is available here.