PWUP

Unit Split

PowerUp Acquisition Corp.

Raised
$294M
CIK
1847345
Focus
Media, Sports, Entertainment, Leisure, Gaming
External link: SEC Filings

SPAC Team

Leadership

Bruce Hack serves as our Executive Chairman. He led one of the video game industry’s most successful companies and co-led market-leading firms in the broader media and technology space. Mr. Hack was director then chairman of Technicolor SA from 2010 to 2019. Prior, he was a principal in the creation of Activision Blizzard and served as the company’s vice chairman from 2008 to 2009. Mr. Hack was chief executive officer of Vivendi Games from 2004 to 2008, where he architected one of the largest turnarounds in video game history and launched Blizzard’s World of Warcraft, one of the decade’s defining online games. He was vice chairman of the Universal Music Group from 1998 to 2001 and chief financial officer of Universal Studios from 1995 to 1998. He joined The Seagram Company in 1982 after serving as an international trade negotiator at the U.S. Treasury in Washington, D.C. Amongst his roles at The Seagram Company were chief financial officer of Tropicana Products, Inc. and director of strategic planning. Mr. Hack is the founder and chief executive officer of BLH Venture, a provider of consulting and investment services to companies in the media and entertainment sectors. Mr. Hack is a director at Games for Change, a member of Endeavor Global, and on advisory councils for both the Hamilton Lugar School for Global and International Studies at Indiana University and the Cornell University College of Arts and Sciences. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Cornell University and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago. We believe Mr. Hack is well-qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors due to his extensive strategic, operations, financial and leadership experiences at both the company and board levels.

Jack Tretton serves as our Chief Executive Officer and a member of our board of directors. Mr. Tretton, with a 35-year career in gaming, is one of the great leaders in the last 25 years of console video gaming. Mr. Tretton was at Sony Computer Entertainment America from 1995 to 2014, serving as president and chief executive officer from 2006 to 2014. Mr. Tretton helped establish the PlayStation brand as a worldwide leader in interactive entertainment. Mr Tretton received credits on over 200 titles at Sony, with an average of 74% gross IRR. Under his leadership, Sony’s in-house titles posted stronger sales trends versus the overall industry average, with an average outperformance of 42% for AAA releases. During his tenure, Sony’s global video game revenue grew from $1.9 billion in the fiscal year ending March 1995 to $11.6 billion in the fiscal year ending March 2015. Sony PlayStation outperformed the top competitors across several key dimensions in combined hardware and software revenues. In 2014, Mr Tretton founded Interactive Concepts LLC, a consulting firm that provides management, research, fundraising, and publishing services for over 30 different clients including Fortune 500 companies. In 2018, Mr Tretton founded Interactive Gaming Ventures. Prior to Sony, Mr. Tretton was General Manager at JVC Musical Industries from 1991 to 1995 and Vice President of Sales at Activision from 1986 to 1991. Mr. Tretton graduated from Providence College with a Bachelor of Science, Marketing. We believe Mr. Tretton is well-qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors due to his extensive strategic, operational and board experience.

Michael Olson serves as our Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Olson is currently the chief financial officer of Version1, a multi-property esports organization. Previously, Mr. Olson was a managing director and senior equity research analyst at Piper Sandler (formerly Piper Jaffray & Co.). Mr. Olson spent 19 years at Piper Sandler from 2001 to 2020 covering the video game, internet and digital media sectors. Mr. Olson earned an undergraduate degree in Business (Finance, Investments and Banking) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Gabriel Schillinger serves as our President. Mr. Schillinger was founder and chief executive officer of Gamma Innovations, which created a distributed computing platform that was powered by almost a million gamers across the globe as of June 2019. Gamma Innovations partnered with Razer, a lifestyle brand for gamers, to launch Softminer in 2018. Mr. Schillinger led the sale of Gamma to Animoca Brands in 2019. Prior to Gamma, Mr. Schillinger founded BIM Networks in 2009, a mobile payments company that provides an alternative ACH platform for quick service retail merchants. Mr. Schillinger graduated from New York University.

Matthew Ball serves as our Chief Strategy Officer. Mr. Ball is the managing partner of EpyllionCo, which operates a venture and corporate advisory arm and an early stage venture fund. Mr. Ball is also a venture partner at Makers Fund, and an advisor to start-ups including Genvid Technologies, The Athletic, and Parrot Analytics. Mr. Ball also co-produced “Rival Peak,” a cloud-native video game, which premiered on Facebook in December 2020 and accumulated hundreds of millions of watch-time. Mr. Ball is also a renowned theorist writing on the Metaverse. His essays have received praise from Mark Zuckerberg, Tencent Global PR, and have been covered by New York Times, The New Yorker, Wired, The Economist, and more. He is a co-founder of the Ball Metaverse Index, the Index behind the Roundhill Ball Metaverse ETF, which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is in the top 5% of U.S.-listed ETFs in terms of inflows in the second half of 2021, having launched June 30 2021. From 2016 to 2018, Mr. Ball served as head of strategy and planning for Amazon Studios, a global role that oversaw many major content investments for the studio. Prior to joining Amazon, Mr. Ball was a director at The Chernin Group’s Otter Media. Until 2015, Mr. Ball was also an executive at Accenture in its Corporate Strategy: Technology, Media, and Telecommunications practice. Mr. Ball is a graduate of Canada’s Ivey Business School.

Peter Blacklow has agreed to serve as a member of our board of directors, to chair our compensation committee, and to serve as a member on our audit committee. Mr. Blacklow is a general partner at Boston Seed Capital and co-founded the fund in 2010. Mr. Blacklow serves on the boards of Reggora, Alyce, QL Gaming Group, Beamable, and is co-chairman and co-founder of Drive by DraftKings. Mr. Blacklow served as executive vice president of digital at the Game Show Network from 2006 to 2013. Previously, Mr. Blacklow served as chief marketing officer for WorldWinner/FUN Technologies from 2003 to 2006. Prior to that, Mr. Blacklow was senior vice president of marketing at Monster.com from 1999-2003. Before Monster.com, Mr. Blacklow ran the global basketball business unit at Converse from 1995-1999. Mr. Blacklow received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard University. We believe Mr. Blacklow is well-qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors due to his extensive strategic, operations, and leadership experiences at both the company and board levels.

Anna Sweet has agreed to serve as a member of our board of directors and a member of our audit and compensation committees. Ms. Sweet has served as the chief executive officer of Bad Robot Games since 2020. Prior, Ms. Sweet worked at Caffeine, a live streaming company, as senior vice president of content and community from 2017 to 2019. Ms. Sweet was head of content and social VR at Facebook in 2017 and was head of developer strategy at Oculus from 2015 to 2016. Previously, Ms. Sweet was senior product and business development manager at Valve from 2009 to 2015, working on the team that developed the Steam platform, a leading video game distribution service. She began her career in the Xbox division of Microsoft, working on Xbox’s platform technologies from 2004 to 2007. In 2020, Ms. Sweet joined makers fund as a venture partner. Ms. Sweet earned a computer science degree from Rochester Institute of Technology. We believe Ms. Sweet is well-qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors due to her extensive strategic and operational experience.

Julie Uhrman has agreed to serve as a member of our board of directors and to chair our audit committee. Ms. Uhrman is a founder, chief executive officer, and president of Angel City Football Club, the National Women’s Soccer League’s newest professional women’s soccer team launching in Los Angeles in 2022. Ms. Uhrman most recently was the president of media for PEI, a global media and lifestyle company, from 2018-2020, where she oversaw the company’s media offerings across all verticals. Previously, Ms. Uhrman served as executive vice president and general manager of Over-The-Top Ventures for Lionsgate, building and managing the company’s multiple streaming franchises, from 2016-2018. In 2013, Ms. Uhrman founded and was chief executive officer of OUYA, a pioneering android-based game console for the living room, which raised a record-breaking $8.6 million through Kickstarter and then went on to secure venture funding from Kleiner Perkins and Alibaba before selling to Razer in 2015. Ms. Uhrman has been named one of Adweek’s 2020 Most Powerful Women In Sports, one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company and one of the Creative 50 by Ad Age. Ms. Uhrman graduated from Washington University in St. Louis and received her MBA from UCLA Anderson School of Business. We believe Ms. Uhrman is well-qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors due to her extensive strategic and operational experience.