FaZe Clan plots entertainment takeover
The Future. While FaZe Clan started as an esports team dedicated to Call of Duty streams, it’s grown into an entertainment giant spanning esports, merch, lifestyle content, brand activations, and even cinema. But with gaming still the anchor to FaZe’s popularity (but definitely not its financial success), the most meaningful thing that the company may have accomplished is helping cement gaming’s cultural cache in the worlds of fashion, sports, and entertainment.
GQ’s Sam Schube recently profiled FaZe Clan and came away with some insight into the future of the hard-to-define entertainment company.
- It now has 11 esports teams (for games like Call of Duty, Fortnite, Counter-Strike, and more).
- Across all of its members’ socials — some dedicated to esports, others to lifestyle, pranks, and more — FaZe Clan stands at about 500 million followers.
- It brought on high-profile members like Snoop Dogg, Lil Yachty, and Arizona Cardinal quarterback Kyler Murray.
- CEO Lee Trink has helped increase FaZe Clan’s headcount by 60% (now at 130 employees) in the past two years.
- The company is moving aggressively into Web3, believing it will bring in more than 80% of its revenue in a few years.
Even though FaZe Clan isn’t yet profitable (losing $37 million last year on $53 million in revenue), it’s about to go public through a SPAC merger at a valuation of $1 billion.
Play as a team
The unique setup of FaZe Clan is that it’s essentially dozens of businesses operating under one roof. Each personality (FaZe ___ ) acts as both entrepreneur and celebrity of their own fiefdom, while in-house talent managers secure deals and handle logistics. And with the company bullish on adopting the metaverse, those personalities may not even need to be human in the future — Faze Mynt is a digital avatar created and run by FaZe’s head of creative tech, Tarek Mustapha.
With over 3 billion people playing video games all over the world (and it being the most popular form of entertainment among Gen Z), it’s no wonder that Matt Belloni, revered entertainment reporter at Puck, said FaZe Clan is “definitely among those groups of emerging media companies that you have to pay attention to, because they are a sign of a trend. And the trend is towards esports, and the creator-driven digital economy of content.”