Esports “infrastructure” platform, PlayVS, has closed a $15m Series A funding round to develop school-sponsored gaming programs, “clicking off” its inaugural season in October, with organized esports in over 18 states with approximately 5m students across 5k schools.
The round was led by New Enterprise Associates, with participation from Dollar Shave Club founder Michael Dubin, Twitch cofounder Kevin Lin, Nas, the San Francisco 49ers, and existing investor Science.
What exactly does esports infrastructure entail?
PlayVS, which rocketed out of the LA-based Science startup studio in April, is an all-in-one online portal for esports players that develops organizational software to formalize high school gaming competitions.
With the PlayVS platform, matches are set and scheduled, stats are tracked and collected, and wins and losses are auto-recorded to prevent cheating — basically everything the NFHS (AKA, the high school equivalent of the NCAA) does for IRL sports.
In fact, since November, the company has partnered with the NFHS to learn the nuances of HS sports to build out leagues and establish rules.
Esports on the up and up
As esports’ popularity continues to rise, colleges and professional organizations have started investing in scholarship programs and pro teams — PlayVS wants to feed that talent funnel.
According to TechCrunch, their new round of funding will go toward expanding the product and the team to eventually put PlayVS in every high school across the country.