Forte, a leading provider of blockchain solutions for game publishers, raises $725 million in a Series B funding round led by Sea Capital and Kora Management.
What Forte Does?
Forte’s blockchain gaming platform allows game publishers to easily integrate blockchain technologies into their games, enabling features such as seamless, embeddable token wallets, non-fungible token (NFT) minting and selling, payment rails, and other services built specifically for blockchain token economies and the management of digital and virtual assets.
In blockchain-enabled games, players can truly own goods, rather than making pure entertainment expenditures. Players around the world can freely trade goods and services with each other, and can participate in community economies that reward creativity, collaboration, and skill. These new systems provide game players and communities all around the world with new creative and economic opportunities.
Forte’s end-to-end gaming platform enables the emergence of community economics, a system where the interests of game developers and players are aligned, leading to healthier, sustainable game communities.
The team is composed of longtime industry members (Unity, ngmoco, Riot Games, Electronic Arts, Sony, and Rockstar Games, among others), and is currently working with over 40+ acclaimed game developers from across the industry to reimagine the economics of games.
Forte provides game publishers built-in compliance and security products, ensuring global frameworks for regulated activity including money transmittal, anti-money laundering, tax compliance, and IP protection in order to protect both players and publishers’ businesses and intellectual properties.
Another unique benefit Forte enables for publishers is its customizability and interoperability with multiple blockchains. Many Forte partners start off with Forte to introduce NFTs and other tokenized assets both inside and outside their core games and apps, then graduate to long-term business models and revenue streams through in-game economies and player-to-player marketplaces, eventually connecting to Layer-1 and Layer-2 blockchains, providing freedom of choice and maximum liquidity for their players.
Forte Blockchain Gaming Platform Key Stats
- Currently invite-only and in private testing.
- 40+ game developer partners.
- Over 15 million players across partner games.
LionTree has served as exclusive financial advisor to Forte this year, bringing its global strategic relationships to Forte as the company continues to accelerate growth.
Forte co-founder and CEO Josh Williams, commented:
“Over the past 50 years, games have undergone seismic shifts in their business and revenue models, becoming more aligned with players at every turn. First there were arcade games, where players had to essentially pay per minute of play. Then came home console and PC games, where gamers could play as much as they want after paying once. Next, games moved online and the free-to-play (F2P) model allowed gamers to play even AAA games as much as they want for free, with only optional in-game / in-app purchases.”
“The games industry has grown at each turn as it aligns more and more closely with players, and today it is the largest form of entertainment globally—larger than film and music combined—with nearly $180 billion in annual revenue.”
“We believe we are at the forefront of a new technological wave, and blockchain gaming will be even bigger than all the shifts we’ve seen before. Forte’s mission is to prepare all game developers, big and small—whether you already have a AAA title with millions of players or you are building a blockchain game from the ground up—to be successful in this new landscape.”
Massive Industry Backing For Forte
The latest funding round also got support from leading game and media publishers including Animoca Brands, Big Bets (Huuuge Games), Overwolf, Playstudios, Warner Music Group, zVentures (Razer), and blockchain partners Cosmos, Polygon Studios, and Solana Ventures, as well as investors including Griffin Gaming Partners, Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), and Tiger Global.
Daniel Jacobs, Senior Analyst and Founder, Kora Management LP, said:
“Forte has incredible traction in the gaming space, due in part to the robustness of its technical and compliance solutions. We partnered with Forte because of its ethos of building a platform that is simple to integrate without limiting developer flexibility or control, building for the long-term, solving scalability challenges that limit transaction throughput on blockchains today, mitigating high latency and costs associated with blockchain transactions, as well as future-proofing with blockchain portability and cross-chain interoperability.”
“Publishers can grow their businesses with new, innovative technical solutions, and business models. Players are now able to truly own their in-app purchases and virtual goods. This is a win for the entire ecosystem.”
In May, Forte raised $185 million in its Series A, at a $1 billion valuation, led by Griffin Gaming Partners. The new funding brings Forte’s total capital raise to $910 million in 2021.
Forte intends to use the new funds to expand its suite of products and services, and accelerate the onboarding of the world’s largest and emerging game and content publishers.