World Chess calculates next move with LSE float

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  • The company was founded in 2017 with the goal of “bringing chess to the mass market around the world”.
  • The company hopes to close the deal in November, trading under the ticker CHSS.
  • There is no news on whether there was interest from buyers in the IPO.

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World Chess is preparing a £6.9m (€8m) listing on the London Stock Exchange.

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The company, which was founded in 2017 with the goal of “bringing chess to the mass market around the world,” hopes to list in November under the ticker CHSS.

Chess has exploded in popularity in recent years, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic and following the release of the Netflix series Queen’s Gambit.

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World Chess is about to take the next step with the goal of raising £6.9m ahead of listing on the London Stock Exchange.

An article in the Michigan Journal of Economics details the “rapid revival” of chess.

It states that the so-called “new chess boom” describes “the rise in chess viewership and play around the world starting in 2018 and picking up speed in March 2020 as people were forced to turn to the internet for more entertainment.” .

In a statement, World Chess CEO Ilya Merenzon praised the renewed interest in chess for letting the stock market float. He did not mention whether there was interest from buyers in the IPO.

He added: “I am delighted to announce our intention to enter the London market at a time of change for chess and our business.

“The explosion of interest in chess continues, which has accelerated in recent years and even more during the pandemic. To keep pace with this growth, we are expanding our operations and expanding our range of services internationally.

“We believe that chess is the only remaining grassroots sport that has not yet fully benefited from the creativity and investment of the commercial sector.”

World Chess was incorporated as a holding company in 2017 to handle chess-related commercial activities.

This includes the organization of top-level tournaments, the operation of the official online gaming platform of the International Chess Federation (FIDE) and other sports, lifestyle and chess-related products.

The company is headquartered in London and has offices in Germany and Georgia, but it also operates internationally.

After the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, World Chess effectively ceased all commercial activities in Russia, selling all of its Russian assets and relocating staff.

World Chess estimates that there are currently over 600 million active chess players worldwide, and this number is increasing due to the growth of online platforms.

However, he added that chess is still much less commercialized than other sports and market expansion is in its early stages.

For this reason, the company believes it is “well positioned to take advantage of the sector’s growth through online, in-person and hybrid chess events and events, and by providing value-added products to players, viewers and partners.”

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