The public criticism being faced by RFRSH Entertainment owning both Astralis and BLAST has finally come to an end as RFRSH entertainment after just three weeks of announcing that Astralis would soon operate independently has stuck to its word and delivered.
Today a deal was struck between RFRSH Entertainment and Astralis Group ApS, a newly formed company consisting of a group of investors (Danish business and sportsmen) managing assets for both Astralis and Origen (RFRSH’s League of Legends team).
The deal witnessed RFRSH selling all its competitive branches to the newly formed company for an undisclosed fee, with the transaction being completed by next week. (According to TV 2 Sport the deal was around 10-15 Million Euros.)
Along with the transfer of the aforementioned assets, Nikolaj Nyholm, the CEO of RFRSH Entertainment, resigned from his position to instead become the director of Astralis Group ApS. Jakob Lund Kristensen, co-founder of RFRSH followed him to become the co-owner. While Director of Sports, Kasper Hvidt and VP of Communications & Brand, Steen Laursen also quit RFRSH to step in the management for the new company.
Nikolaj Nyholm had a few words to offer,
“I am really proud of what we have achieved, but at some point, one must also make a choice, and my heart is close to Astralis and Origen. We also do this in order to separate ownership between RFRSH and the teams, so that nothing is squeezed.”
The announcement to split Astralis from its parent company RFRSH came after heavy public criticism over the parent’s company insistence on having the team attend their own events, instead of the CS:GO tournaments on the circuit. This lead to Astralis dropping from their undisputed number one spot in the world rankings down to three, from which the team has not been able to recover despite a few attempts.
Image Credit: Liquipedia
In a leaked email obtained by Dexerto following these events, it was indeed proved that the above events were responsible for affecting the ties between Astralis and RFRSH, all of it being admitted by the founder and CEO of RFRSH, Nikolaj Nyholm.
The email also stated that the players will retain their piece of equity as the investors will only be acquiring ‘majority shareholding’, while also revealing their plans to create their 'own league' by 2020.
With the separation of the two, the players will be finally released of all the pressure they had been facing from the public, increasing their chances of performing better at the coming Major. As for RFRSH, they still have three more BLAST Pro Series in the pipeline, with two being held in Moscow and Copenhagen while the third location remains undisclosed as of now.