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Playmaker moves into igaming affiliation with $31.2m Wedge Traffic acquisition


Toronto-listed affiliate business Playmaker Capital has acquired Wedge Traffic for $31.2m, in a move that it said should allow it to enter gaming affiliation.

Playmaker will pay an initial upfront payment of $8.5m in cash and 3,694,933 Playmaker common shares, priced at CAD$0.75 per Share.

There will then be a further contingent consideration of $20.7m. The largest portion of this contingent payment will be a payment of $16.7m – paid in a combination of cash and shares – if the business hits certain revenue and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) targets in 2023 and 2024. Playmaker will also make two payments based on EBITDA in those years, worth $1.5m in 2023 and $1.0m in 2024. Finally, there will be payments of $750,000 if the business hits certain revenue targets in 2023 and 2024.

Playmaker already owns a number of sports media sites such as Yardbarker and JuanFootball. However, it said that the Wedge acquisition would allow it to “also becom[e] a leading affiliate for the newly regulating igaming industry across the US and Canada”.

Wedge Traffic owns and manages eight web properties, including affiliate site Wedge News and Twitch channel Slot Squad. Its properties are currently active in 16 US states, plus Ontario in Canada.

“We have been very clear that creating a centre of excellence in affiliate was key to rounding out our offering as a leading sports media business,” Playmaker CEO Jordan Gnat said.

“We look to super-serve all of our partners, and Wedge allows us to better serve critical customer segments, sports betting and igaming operators. The team at Wedge is superb and we could not be happier having them join our family. Dan, David, Ryan and their team have worked together for years and they have quickly built relationships within Playmaker over the past few months. 

“This gives us great confidence that we can win together, leveraging the assets and expertise already present in our Playmaker ecosystem.”

As part of the deal, Wedge Traffic founders Dan Kersh and David Copeland will join Playmaker’s senior leadership team, in order to provide experience in igaming affiliation.

“Outside of the fact that Playmaker’s diverse portfolio of brands will directly complement our business, there were two key reasons for making the decision to join the Playmaker family,” Kersh said. “Firstly, they understand how to support and accelerate data driven marketing within the igaming sector. 

“Secondly, and perhaps of even greater importance, they appreciate the value of creating a winning culture and how it must be considered the heartbeat of any successful business.”