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Fortnite is bringing in buku bucks for its developers, and their top line is only growing. The Hustle Wed, Jun 6 Brought to you by The Black Tux… they handle the fit and style, you just say, “I do.” Tencent...
By: Wes Schlagenhauf
June 6, 2018
Fortnite is bringing in buku bucks for its developers, and their top line is only growing.
Brought to you by The Black Tux… they handle the fit and style, you just say, “I do.”
Tencent and Epic Games made almost $300m on Fortnite in April
More than 40m people have played Fortnite: Battle Royale since its release in 2017, and, according to digital game sales tracker SuperData Research, the game raked in $296m across mobile, console, and PC platforms… in the month of April alone.
Holy Fortnite, Batman.
Fortnite doubled in April what it generated in the month of February, putting it on track to become a billion-dollar game in its first year.
Fortnite for the layman…
Fortnite is a “sandbox survival game” developed by Epic Games described, according to Epic’s founder Tim Sweeney, as “Minecraft meets Left 4 Dead.
Not layman-enough? Essentially, you run around building defensive positions (AKA “forts”) and killing people king-of-the-hill style until there’s one player left standing.
People really like to play it -- and apparently, watch it (a recent tournament had over 42m live views, and it recently surpassed Minecraft’s run as the most watched game on YouTube).
Pays to be free
The game runs on a free-to-play model, but don’t worry, they make up the money they lose (and then some) with in-game purchases.
One of their main breadwinners is a $10 per 10-week subscription called Battle Pass that lets players unlock anything from in-game dance moves to goofy yet coveted character costumes (like the popular John Wick skin that lets players look like Keanu Reeves in their digital existence).
And sales continue to climb: The game reportedly makes more than $1m a day on mobile alone, and they haven’t even released an Android version yet (expected this summer).
According to SuperData, the whole gaming industry is booming: Players spent almost $9.1B on digital games across platforms in April, up from $7.4B in the previous year -- making Fortnite a standout in a high-scoring industry.
Still partial to Golden Eye
Patreon has acquired a startup called Kit that will help the ‘talent’ sell their merch
According to Patreon’s VP of product, Wyatt Jenkins, “over 60% of today’s Patreon creators either want to or already deliver some kind of physical merchandise.” And, up until now, the creators have had to lick envelopes and tape boxes themselves.
That’s why yesterday, Patreon, the digital artist commune looking to put money in the hands of its “creators,” announced they are acquiring New York-based Kit, a startup that started in product reviews and has recently pivoted into merchandise logistics.
Let the creators ‘create,’ people!
With Kit, Patreon promises a “simple” automated merchandising solution that will keep the talent from folding graphic tees and keeping the books, so they can focus on... the craft.
Patreon first started working on their merch service last December and, according to TechCrunch, began talking with Kit around the same time the company was pivoting (which ultimately led to the acquisition).
Sounds like a match made in merch-table heaven
While the terms of the deal were not released, Jenkins told Crunchbase that both parties were “stoked.”
The company currently takes a 5% cut of whatever each creator makes (WAY better than YouTube’s 45%), but it’s unclear how Patreon will profit from the future merch sales.
According to Jenkins, Patreon currently has 100k creators, supported by 2m individuals with paid memberships, and is on track to pay out $300m to its creators this year -- that’s almost the total of what they have paid their creators in the first 5 years since they started.
Vanilla volatility caused a shortage of ice cream and a surplus of organized crime
According to a Financial Timesreport, strong demand and limited supply bumped vanilla prices from $20/kg 5 years ago to more than $600 -- making the crop more valuable than silver.
The boom is making vanilla-flavored fortunes for some farmers, and even more for those on the wrong side of the law.
A big bean boom
Vanilla’s labor-intensive harvesting process makes it the 2nd-priciest spice (after saffron, which can sell for up to $10k per pound). In Madagascar, where 80% of vanilla is grown (and the average annual per capita income is $400), vanilla vines can yield $8k or more.
But it’s not all milkshakes and cupcakes out there... Farmers typically only receive 5-10% of the vanilla value.
The rest of that sweet bean green goes to ‘vanilla barons’
Much of the crop money ends up in the hands of middlemen, thieves, smugglers, and money launderers who exploit the lack of vanilla security.
And, alas, when prices inevitably drop, farmers who quit their day jobs to pursue vanilla dreams will be left with nothing. So, thanks to vanilla-villains, both farmers and consumers lose.
Nestle increased the price of all its vanilla-based ice cream by 2.5% in response to the shortage -- and other brands will likely be forced to follow scoop -- sorry, suit.
Cracking down on crypto crime, the SEC presses the Szczepanik button
You can call her Commander Crypto: To protect investors from crypto criminals, the SEC appointed Valerie Szczepanik as its first-ever digital currency specialist.
You should probably learn to pronounce her name -- ‘Skuh-panic’ -- because you’ll be hearing it a lot.
The sheriff that digital currency’s wild west needs
The only thing with more letters than Szczepanik’s last name is her CV: Including a JD from Georgetown, a BS in engineering from UPenn, and a half dozen leadership positions at the SEC.
But, to tackle a global cybercrime industry expected to hit $6T by 2021, she’s going to need to use every consonant she’s got.
She’s the right woman for the job… but that won’t make it easy
In the past few months, the SEC has made it clear that it wants to regulate digital currencies and exchanges -- once it figures out how they work.
Szczepanik will be in charge of that process -- and on the front lines of the fight to control something that the SEC can hardly classify.
But the the bull market for digital currencies will fight back against the SEC’s wrangling attempts. With more than $1.3B in venture capital (and another $4.5B raised in ICOs), the cryptocurrency is a well-funded opponent for Szczepanik and her team of crypto-wrangling crusaders.
You heard it right, my friend. We’re giving away 50 tickets to Hustle Con… fo’ free.
No checkout fees, no taxes, no rebate option.
Normally, the chance to see the founders of Instacart, Ellevest, MVMT, and a bunch of other big-name brands in person would set you back $400.
Is it worth every penny? Absolutely.
Does that mean you shouldn’t throw your hat in the FREE ring? Absolutely not.
Get your lucky caps ready. Enter here for a chance to win. Contest closes on Friday, June 8.
THE FINE PRINT: These tickets cannot be sold for profit, or used to get a refund for an already-booked ticket.
deals deals deals
“My eyes are tired. There I said it. Tired of seeing SO MANY good deals go unpurchased. It’s a travesty, people! It’s time to sit up, zone in, and buy folks -- we got savings to capture. This week, Tile celebrates Father’s Day and Hint has a beverage bonanza.”
- Ted “Whole Paycheck” Rutherford from Lincoln, NE
After finding no luck in the warehouse stores, a friend of Adam’s recommended The Black Tux. Adam took a shot.
Best. Decision. Ever.
The Black Tux’s latest suits fuse modern stylings with a tailored fit for every body type, so our hero Adam found a suit that fit just right and made him look like a million bucks. Here’s a slightly blurry photo of him as proof.
The Black Tux was so convenient, Adam used it to get suits for all of his groomsmen -- 8 people coming from 9 states. Delivery and returns are done by mail, with order tracking so, according to Adam, he could “stay on top of his bum friends.”
And with 20+ showroom locations, Adam and his groomsmen could see the suits for themselves before the big day.
Adam was so impressed, he’s rented suits for other friend’s weddings and parties. He’s even got the soon-to-be married couples in the Austin office renting from The Black Tux.
Live happily ever after with a great fitting tux at a wallet-approved price.
Readers of The Hustle get $20 off when you use the code HUSTLE20.