Transformational acquisition significantly increases Playmaker’s U.S. market presence; immediately adds more than four million unique monthly users and over 350,000 daily newsletter subscribers to the Playmaker audience ecosystem
Toronto, Canada (July 27, 2021) – Playmaker Capital Inc. (TSX-V: PMKR) (“Playmaker”) is pleased to announce today that it has acquired the California-based sports and entertainment digital media business, YB Media LLC (d.b.a. Yardbarker) (“Yardbarker”). With its comprehensive North American sports and entertainment focus and highly engaged fan base, Yardbarker represents an integral pillar of Playmaker’s growth ambitions and a strong platform from which it will continue to expand its U.S. presence and build its global sports media ecosystem.
Yardbarker is a premier U.S. sports and entertainment media platform, attracting over four million unique users per month and generating more than nine million total sessions across its primarily NFL, NBA, MLB, College Sports, and NHL content offerings. The company’s core editorial focus is to create and surface timely, engaging, and relevant news and analysis to its users in a fun and efficient format. The platform publishes over 25,000 full-text articles per month through a combination of its in-house editorial team and 125+ content syndication partner sites, while also augmenting traditional coverage with a collection of over 5,000 sports and entertainment quizzes and slideshows. The unique content mix allows Yardbarker to offer a differentiated user experience and generate high engagement and interaction rates among its audiences.
The Morning Bark, Yardbarker’s daily email newsletter, reaches more than 350,000 subscribers with open rates in excess of 25%. The all-in-one email product features a Top 10 rundown of the most important stories of the day and a customizable newsfeed that allows users to keep track of their favourite sports, schools and teams. A significant driver of traffic to the website, The Morning Bark serves as a low-cost, repeatable, first-party user acquisition tool.
“We believe that Playmaker is in the process of building the next great collection of digital sports assets and we couldn’t be more excited to be joining at this early stage,” Yardbarker’s CEO Ben Maggin said. “We look forward to working with the Playmaker team to continue expanding Yardbarker’s reach and deliver the best possible service to our users.”
Figure 1: Yardbarker adds immediate value to the Playmaker ecosystem
Yardbarker was founded in 2006 and its three current owners, Jeff Kloster, Mark Johns and Ben Maggin, bring deep experience and knowledge of the digital sports media arena to the Playmaker senior leadership team.
“We are delighted to welcome Yardbarker to the Playmaker family. This is a U.S. platform acquisition for us that is not only transformational, but also immediately financially accretive to our shareholders,” commented Jordan Gnat, Playmaker Founder and CEO. “Ben, Jeff and Mark have built a great business with incredibly loyal fans. Playmaker will be able to leverage Yardbarker’s content of all the key North American sports within our current Futbol Sites’ assets and vice versa. This is how we will build our ecosystem. We will cross pollinate our various properties to provide all our fans globally with the best content on all sports.”
Pursuant to the terms of a purchase agreement dated July 26, 2021, Playmaker acquired 100% of Yardbarker for aggregate consideration of up to US$24 million. The purchase price consideration consisted of a payment of US$10 million in cash and the issuance of US$8 million of Playmaker common shares (the “Initial Shares”) on closing, an additional US$2 million of Playmaker common shares (the “Contingent Shares”) to be issued to the sellers upon Yardbarker achieving a minimum EBITDA of US$1.5 million within the 12-month period following closing and up to US$2 million, payable to the sellers based on Yardbarker’s performance toward an EBITDA target of US$2.5 million in each of the two years following closing. The Initial Shares were priced at the equivalent of CAD$0.55 per share. The Contingent Shares will be priced at the greater of CAD$0.60 per share or the trailing 30 day average, volume adjusted, share price of the common shares of Playmaker prior to such issuance.
For the 2021 calendar year, Yardbarker is anticipated to generate revenue of approximately US$5 million.
TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE DISCLAIMER
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Satisfaction of any portion of the US$4 million earn-out amount in Playmaker common shares will be subject to the prior approval of the TSXV.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
This press release may contain forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities legislation, which reflects Playmaker’s current expectations regarding future events. The words “will”, “expects”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “plans”, “intends” and similar expressions are often intended to identify forward-looking information, although not all forward-looking information contains these identifying words. Specific forward-looking information contained in this press release includes, but is not limited to, statements relating to (i) the benefits expected to result from the acquisition of Yardbarker by Playmaker including plans for expansion in the U.S., (ii) the future performance of Yardbarker, including the achievement of certain earn-out targets and the continued expansion, growth and performance of Yardbarker’s media output and (iii) other statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking information is based on a number of assumptions and is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond Playmaker’s control, which could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those that are disclosed in or implied by such forward-looking information. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: changes in general economic, business and political conditions. Playmaker undertakes no obligation to update such forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as expressly required by applicable law.
Playmaker (TSX-V: PMKR) is a digital sports media company that lives at the intersection of sports, betting, media and technology. Playmaker is building a collection of premier sports media brands, curated to deliver highly engaged audiences of sports fans to sports betting companies, leagues, teams and advertisers.
For more information, visit: http://www.playmaker.fans or contact Playmaker Chief Executive Officer Jordan Gnat via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yardbarker is a digital media property focused on the publishing of sports and entertainment news and information. Founded in 2006, the property distributes content on its website, social media platforms, and via third party syndication partners. In addition, Yardbarker curates and distributes ‘The Morning Bark’ and ‘Quiz of the Day’ email newsletters.