Vice President, Mergers & Acquisitions, Co-Chairman of the Board
Lyle Berman is the Vice President, Mergers & Acquisitions, and Co-Chairman of the Board of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. Since June 1990, Mr. Berman has been the chairman and chief executive officer of Berman Consulting Corporation, a private consulting firm he founded. Mr. Berman began his career with Berman Buckskin, his family’s leather business, which he helped grow into a major specialty retailer with 27 outlets. After selling Berman Buckskin to W.R. Grace in 1979, Mr. Berman continued as president and chief executive officer and led the company to become one the country’s largest retail leather chains, with over 200 stores nationwide. In 1990, Mr. Berman participated in the founding of Grand Casinos, Inc. Mr. Berman is credited as one of the early visionaries in the development of casinos outside of the traditional gaming markets of Las Vegas and Atlantic City. In less than five years, the company opened eight casino resorts in four states. In 1994, Mr. Berman financed the initial development of Rainforest Cafe. He served as the chairman and chief executive officer from 1994 unti1 2000. In October 1995, Mr. Berman was honored with the B’nai B’rith “Great American Traditions Award.” In April 1996, he received the Gaming Executive of the Year Award; in 2004, Mr. Berman was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame; and in 2009, he received the Casino Lifetime Achievement Award from Raving Consulting & Casino Journal. In 1998, Lakes Entertainment, Inc. was formed. In 2002, as chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Lakes Entertainment, Inc., Mr. Berman was instrumental in creating the World Poker Tour. Mr. Berman served as the executive chairman of the board of WPT Enterprises, Inc. (later known as Voyager Oil & Gas, Inc. and Emerald Oil, Inc.) from its inception in February 2002 until July 2013. Mr. Berman also served as a director of PokerTek, Inc. from January 2005 until October 2014, including serving as chairman of the board from January 2005 until October 2011. Mr. Berman is the father of Brad Berman, one of Allied Gaming & Entertainment’s directors.
Co-Chairman of the Board, Independent Director
Mr. Li is the current Chairman of Ourgame International Holdings Limited (“Ourgame”), the beneficial owner of Primo Vital Limited, which is the Company’s largest stockholder, beneficially owning approximately 34% of the Company’s outstanding common stock. Mr. Li previously served as an executive director and acting Chief Executive Officer of Ourgame. Mr. Li received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of International Business & Economics in Beijing, China. In 2001, Mr. Li served as Assistant President to China Great Wall Industry Corporation. In 2003, Mr. Li founded Business Media China Group (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: BMC) and served as its CEO in 2005, with a market value at the time in excess of 5 billion RMB. Mr. Li served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Elephant Media Group in 2008. Since 2014, he has served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of World Business Services Union and Choi Shun Investment.
Yuanfei (Cliff) Qu
Mr. Yuanfei Qu received his Master of Commerce degree in 2003 from the University of Sydney, majored in Finance and Banking. From 2004, Mr. Qu joined Macro Link Group Ltd and led acquisition transactions forShanghai Stock Exchange listed company, Tonghua Grape Wine (SH 600365) as well as a Reverse Takeover transaction for HongKongExchange listed company, New Silkroad (HK 00472).
Mr. Qu established Beijing SansokuuConsulting Company in 2009, provided consulting service for different business including exhibition, advertising, TMT, pawnshop, taxi, wine etc. From 2018, Mr. Qu focused on the investment of civil use UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle), providing service like plant protection and UAV training qualification from AOPA-China, the only test center in southwest China. In June 2020, Mr. Qu founded Sansokuu Limited (Japan) to develop new UAV markets in other Asian countries.
In July 2020, Mr. Qu was also appointed as Vice President of Ourgame International Holdings Limited, responsible for new investment and portfolio management.
Bradley Berman is a director of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. He has been the chairman of Black Ridge Oil & Gas, Inc. since November 2010 and has served as a director of Black Ridge Oil & Gas, Inc. since its inception in April 2010. He was the chief executive officer of Black Ridge Oil & Gas, Inc. from November 2010 to November 2011, its chief financial officer between November 12, 2010 and November 15, 2010, and its corporate secretary from November 2010 to February 2011. Mr. Berman is the president of King Show Games, Inc., a company he founded in 1998. Mr. Berman has worked in various capacities in casino gaming from 1992 to 2004 for Grand Casinos, Inc. and then Lakes Entertainment, Inc., achieving the position of Vice President of Gaming, after which he assumed a lesser role in that company. Mr. Berman was a director of Voyager Oil and Gas, Inc. (formerly Ante4 and WPT) from August 2004 to November 2010. Mr. Berman is the son of Lyle Berman, the Chairman of the Board of Directors for Allied Gaming & Entertainment.
President, Chief Executive Officer, Director
Yinghua Chen is the President, Chief Executive Officer, and Director of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. Ms. Chen is a Co-Founder of Aupera Technologies, a leading video AI technology company, where she is responsible for corporate financing, business development, and strategic partnership. She has successfully raised multiple rounds of funding for Aupera, including from Silicon Valley giant Xilinx (Nasdaq: XLNX). Prior to this, she served as the Executive Vice President of Anthill Resources, a natural resources investment company in Canada, where she oversaw business operations and investment activities. Ms. Chen is also the former Managing Director of China for The Cavendish Group, a UK B2B media and public relations company. In that role, Ms. Chen built up subscriber networks for over ten vertical industry media products and managed the Group’s strategic relationship with the Boao Forum for Asia. Ms. Chen was also part of the founding team of The Balloch Group, a boutique investment banking firm, later acquired by Canaccord Genuity, where she specialized in financial, pharmaceutical, resources and media industry transactions. Ms. Chen holds an EMBA from the University of Paris I: Panthéon-Sorbonne and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of International Business and Economics.
Joseph Lahti is a director of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. Mr. Lahti has been a director of Black Ridge Oil & Gas, Inc. since August 2012. Mr. Lahti is a Minneapolis native and leader in numerous Minnesota business and community organizations. As principal of JL Holdings since 1989, Mr. Lahti has provided funding and management leadership to several early-stage or distressed companies. From 1993 to 2002, he held the positions of chief operating officer, president, chief executive officer and chairman at Shuffle Master, Inc., a company that provided innovative products to the gaming industry. Mr. Lahti served as a director of PokerTek, Inc., a publicly traded company, from 2008 until it was sold in October 2014 (including serving as chairman of the board from 2012 to 2014). Mr. Lahti has previously served on the board of directors of Voyager Oil & Gas, Inc. and Zomax, Inc. He is currently chairman of Innealta Capital, an asset manager. Through his public company board experience, he has participated on, and chaired, both Audit and Compensation Committees.
Mr. Lu is an executive director and the Chief Executive Officer of Ourgame. Mr. Lu had previously served as an independent director of Ourgame since 2020. Prior to that, he served as a director of Zhejiang Xiangyuan Culture Co., Ltd.,(“Xiangyuan Culture”), which is a main board listed company in China (Code in Shanghai Stock Exchange: 600576), from 2015 to 2017, where he served as co-CEO of Xiamen Xtone Animation Co., Ltd., (“Xtone”), and led the merger of Xtone by Xiangyuan Culture in 2014. He also served as CFO of Beijing International Advertising & Communication Group from 2018 to 2019. He previously served as a senior audit manager at Deloitte China for six years, and at Deloitte US for two years from 2001 to 2010. He is currently a non-practicing certified public accountant in China since 2007, as well as a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants since 2009. He holds a Bachelor of Economics degree from University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, China.
Mr. Pliska has served as a director since August 2019. Mr. Pliska served as the Company’s President from August 2019 to July 2021, when the Company sold the World Poker Tour. He has been with the World Poker Tour since 2003. As President and CEO of WPT, Mr. Pliska has overseen the entire WPT business portfolio, including but not limited to live events, online services, televised broadcasts, and WPT office personnel in Los Angeles, London and Beijing. He is one of the longest serving executives in the poker industry and was named the American Poker Awards Industry Person of the Year for 2014. Under his watch, the WPT has witnessed massive global growth from 14 events to over 60 worldwide on 6 continents, has maintained historic ratings of one of the longest running television shows in US history and has awarded more than a billion dollars over its 18 years. In addition to his position as CEO, Mr. Pliska serves as Executive Producer of the World Poker Tour television show and is the co-writer of the WPT Theme song Rise Above. Mr. Pliska holds a B.A. from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts and a J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley’s Law School, Boalt Hall.
Benjamin S. Oehler
Benjamin S. Oehler is a director of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. Mr. Oehler has been a director of Black Ridge Oil & Gas, Inc. since November 2010, and chairman of its audit committee and compensation committee since February 2011. Mr. Oehler is a Founding Partner of Windward Mark, LLC which advises business owners with regard to strategic planning, owner governance and education, business continuity, legacy, philanthropy and liquidity. Windward Mark LLC is a continuation of Mr. Oehler’s consulting practice at Bashaw Group. Inc. (2007-2017) and Linea Capital, LLC (2009 - 2017). From 1999 to 2007, Mr. Oehler was the president and chief executive officer of Waycrosse, Inc., a financial advisory firm for the family owners of Cargill Incorporated. While at Waycrosse, Mr. Oehler was the primary advisor to the five family members who were serving on the Cargill Incorporated board of directors from 1999 to 2006. Mr. Oehler played a key role in two major growth initiatives for Cargill: the merger of Cargill’s fertilizer business into a public company which is now Mosaic, Inc., and the transformation of Cargill’s proprietary financial markets trading group into two major investment management companies: Black River Asset Management, LLC and CarVal Investors, LLC. An investment banker for 20 years, Mr. Oehler’s transaction experience includes public offerings and private placements of debt and equity securities, mergers and acquisitions, fairness opinions and valuations of private companies. Prior to joining Waycrosse, Mr. Oehler was an investment banker for Piper Jaffray. By the time he left Piper Jaffray in 1999, he was group head for Piper’s Industrial Growth Team. He has also played a leadership role in a number of corporate buy-outs and venture stage companies, served on corporate and non-profit boards of directors, and has been involved in the creation and oversight of foundations and charitable organizations, as well as U.S. trusts and off-shore entities.
Mr. Oehler has been a board member and/or founder of many non-profit organizations including the Minnesota Zoological Society, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, The Lake Country Land School, Greencastle Tropical Study Center, Park Nicollet Institute, Afton Historical Society Press, United Theological Seminary and University of Minnesota Investment Advisor, Inc. He has been a director of Waycrosse, Inc., WayTrust Inc., Dain Equity Partners, Inc., Time Management, Inc., BioNIR, Inc. and Agricultural Solutions, Inc. In September 2007, Mr. Oehler completed the Stanford University Law School Directors Forum, a three-day update on key issues facing corporate directors presented by the Stanford Business School and Stanford Law School. From 1984 through 1999, Mr. Oehler was registered with the National Association of Securities Dealers (“NASD”) as a financial principal. Mr. Oehler is a graduate of the University of Minnesota College of Liberal Arts and has completed all course work at the University of Minnesota Business School with a concentration in finance.
Guanzhou (Jerry) Qin
Jerry Qin is a director of Allied Gaming & Entertainment. Mr. Qin brings strong management skills from Fortune 500 companies, hands-on knowledge at high-tech startups, and deep experience in finance and accounting.
Most recently Mr. Qin has worked with Tencent Holdings as Finance Director of Platform & Content Group from Feb 2020 to Sep 2021, overseeing Tencent News, Tencent Sports and various products. Prior to this role, Mr Qin served as the Head of Finance at Aibee Inc., a top artificial-intelligence start-up, from September 2018 until February 2020. Mr. Qin also served as the Senior Finance Director of APAC (China, Japan, India and others) at TripAdvisor (Nasdaq: TRIP) from June 2017 until August 2018. Mr. Qin also served as the Finance Director of APAC (China, Japan and Korea) at Glu Mobile, a top mobile game developer, and as a consultant at Andersen/PWC. Mr. Qin holds Australia CPA, and MBA degree from Fordham University/Peking University.
Mr. Yushi Guo has broad experience in management consulting, board advisory and entrepreneurship. He is the founder and CEO of PanoSoar Management Technology Co., Ltd, a company that builds technological platforms for small and medium-sized businesses. In 2011, Mr. Guo founded Beijing Panorfinity Consulting Co., Ltd., which offers management consulting, board advisory and executive search services. Prior to founding Beijing Panorfinity Consulting Co., Ltd., Mr. Guo served at a client partner at Korn Ferry International from 2009 - 2011 and Gallup Consulting from 2003 - 2009. Mr. Guo currently serves as an independent non-executive director of Ourgame International Holdings Limited. Mr. Guo holds a Master of Science in Ecology and Bachelor of Science from Beijing Forestry University, and Master of Business Administration from Emory University.