Torque Esports Corp, Frankly Inc and WinView Inc have combined to form an integrated news, gaming, sports and esports platform, badged Engine Media Holdings Inc. It will be co-led by Torque Esports CEO Darren Cox and Frankly CEO Lou Schwartz. WinView Executive Chairman Tom Rogers, who also serves as Chairman of Frankly, will serve as Executive Chairman of ENGINE.
The combination of these three companies, said a joint statement, comes at a pivotal moment for live television and video entertainment. As entertainment programming moves on-demand, live television and video will increasingly focus on sports, news, and esports.
These elements of live event media, it said, will require new sources of revenue and distribution as subscriber fees from the existing cable and satellite bundle begin to rapidly decline. ENGINE will be dedicated to accelerating these new, live, immersive experiences for consumers that will drive new revenue opportunities for media industry players and expand the options for live content.
The three companies forming ENGINE already manage or reach across news, esports, and sports gaming with over 100 million monthly consumer touch points. By combining the three companies, the aim is to create an integrated platform company that will be able to help the media industry contend with the need to quickly develop revenue sources that will support all forms of live event programming.
Tom Rogers, Executive Chairman of WinView and Chairman of Frankly said: “These times call for a ‘driving’ force creating new consumer experiences in live news, sports, and esports while providing new sources of revenue for the industry in these genres.
“As the entertainment streaming wars set the path for the future of entertainment programming, the media industry’s approach to developing revenue sources for news and sports, and monetizing live programming, has to change. ENGINE will be able to provide many solutions for all those issues.
“Beyond the many assets of the three companies coming together, the management expertise is also extensive. Darren Cox is a major force in the esports world, and Lou Schwartz is a globally recognized digital media and technology executive who has founded and led several market leading online video companies and chiefly responsible for Frankly’s recent turn around.
“Putting the three companies together all at once is certainly unusual in the media space, but it underscores what a remarkably innovative company ENGINE will be.”
Lou Schwartz, CEO of Frankly, stated: “Having been involved for many years in the distribution of online video, it has become clear to me that there is a strong need for a company that can serve the commercial interests of news and sports media outlets in a world where consumers increasingly consume content through a mobile device or expect an interactive experience rather than passive viewing.
“ENGINE will not only have the resources to manage and distribute content, but also meet the interests of advertisers and brands related to that content while driving direct-to-consumer gaming and other offerings that generate cash through entry fees.”