LiveStreaming website Azubu has not paid several of its partners for the past several months.
Transcripts were provided between an eastern hemisphere team representative and one of Azubu’s regional partnership managers, explicitly laying out the reason for a three-month delay in payment, despite the contractual terms laid out between the team and the streaming company. The representative admitted three key points:
- Azubu has repeatedly failed to secure expected funding in 2016.
- Though they were able to secure partial funding later in October, payments were made in preference to “bigger” streamers. Smaller streamers with payments due for multiple months were deliberately ignored.
- Their investments in developing markets have not at all panned out as expected for the company, forcing their withdrawal from such territories.
Azubu got partial funding in October 2016, which was used to pay the bigger streamers. The smaller streamers are being avoided currently. That being said the streaming platform has not been able to grow as much as they would like. Considering the only number that matters is viewers, it is very unlikely that the streaming platform will see success in the near future. Twitchś dominance in the market remains steady even as Youtube Gaming seems to catch up with it in newer markets.
Non Payment of dues seems to be a regular habit for Azubu. Esportspedia itself was an attempt to recover their reputation after the initial fraud claims laid upon them back in 2013. Ties to financial criminal Kim Seok-ki were revealed by multiple Korean news outlets at the time, with further research done by Richard Lewis via Esports Heaven linking them to Sapinda Group, whose co-founder Lars Windhorst has been convicted of close to three dozen charges of fraud, embezzlement and breach of trust. Though the article was taken offline, supposedly due to legal threats, a copy of it can still be found via Archive.org.
Esports – and esports betting sites – become closer and closer to international fame with large media networks like BBC, ESPN and Turner Broadcasting as they join coverage activity.