02/10/22: NBA 2K League’s new Indy game; Fortnite’s Duos Duels; VCT’s Prime cut
| Thursday February 10, 2022 Good morning! It’s Thursday and this is your early morning Esports brief. New digs for the NBA 2K League, which announced that Indianapolis has been selected as the host city for the upcoming season (the league’s fifth), which will blend remote and in-person games. Play begins March 23 with the amateur qualifying event for the Coinbase NBA2KL 3v3 SLAM OPEN, and will culminate with the NBA2KL 3v3 and 5v5 Finals as part of the NBA2KL Championships on Saturday, Aug. 20 and Saturday, Aug. 27, respectively. In-person NBA 2K League competitions will take place at the new NBA 2K League Studio in Indianapolis at The Pavilion at Pan Am, offering two circular competition stages to allow for simultaneous in?person games that give the broadcast the opportunity to switch between games in real-time to capture the most exciting action.|
“After playing nearly all of the 2020 and 2021 seasons remotely, we are thrilled to get back to our live studio experience in the heart of downtown Indianapolis – a city overflowing with passionate basketball fans and known for putting on some of the biggest events in American sports,” said NBA 2K League President Brendan Donohue. “The NBA 2K League is proud to call Indianapolis our home for the 2022 season.” COMPETITION
The Fortnite Champion Series 2022 campaign dives into play on Feb. 17 offering players a new Duos format along with over $3 million. Each region will echo the format from last year’s Trios play, with two open qualifiers, a semifinal and final. All competing teams will play for points, while the top eight from each qualifier dodge the semifinals and will head straight to the finals.
The Commonwealth Games Federation will feature esports play for the org’s upcoming 2022 event. Esports will receive its own branding, medals, organization, and management. Dot Esports writes that CGF President Dame Louise Martin noted that the inclusion of esports will engage younger audiences and help shape the future of the evolving industry. The 2022 Commonwealth Games kick off on July 28 and will run through Aug. 8.
The Pokémon Company unveiled plans for this year’s Pokémon UNITE World Championship, which is expected to take place in London this August with qualifiers for each region running every month until June and over $1 million in prizes. Seven regions will be represented, including North America, Europe, Japan, South America, Oceania, South Korea, and Asia-Pacific.
Electronic Arts and the NFL follow up the EA SPORTS Ultimate Madden Bowl Final this week with the Ultimate Madden Bowl ESPN Special, a unique presentation of the esports final. ESPN will carry the broadcast on Friday, at 8:30p, marking the Madden NFL Championship Series debut on the channel. The program will re-air once again on February 13, at 9a with Kimmi Chex serving as the Ultimate Madden Bowl ESPN Special host.
BLAST announced plans to enter EA SPORTS football franchise, EA SPORTS FIFA 22, and will produce the 2021/22 edition of the ePremier League. All 20 clubs will be represented in the tournament. For the latest installment of the ePL, BLAST has co-created a brand-new online format and has planned an elevated live event experience for players and fans ahead of March’s ePL Grand Final. This year’s competition sees the return of a live ePremier League Grand Final, where the two best players from all 20 Premier League clubs competing on March 26 and 27.
We are looking for Sports Media Industry experts to be on our exclusive judging panel for this year’s Cynopsis Sports Media Awards. You will be a part of choosing the winners in multiple exciting categories. Then, on April 19, join the finalists and winners as they are recognized across production, marketing, and technology teams, and saluted for their hard work and innovation from one of sports media’s most challenging years to date. Please fill out this entry form to be considered as a judge: https://form.jotform.com/220396817825161. (Oh, and esports are welcomed so get your entries in now by clicking here!)
Tournament organizer PGL appointed IMG to distribute its media rights globally for its 2022 event portfolio. This will include some of the highest profile esports events of the year, including The PGL Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) Major Championship, Antwerp The deal will also see IMG become PGL’s exclusive sponsorship agency. The CS:GO Major Championship 2022 will take place from May 9-22, with the finals taking place in front of a live audience at the Sportpaleis in Antwerp, Belgium, between May 19-22. STREAMHATCHET In a highly anticipated announcement Tuesday, Pokimane assured her fans that she would be staying on Twitch. Amidst the current platform wars between Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming, fans and others speculated that she might change her contract. In recent years, YouTube Gaming has enticed big streamers like Valkyrae, CouRage, TimTheTatman, and others to leave Twitch. Stream Hatchet has taken a look at the data and here are the insights into the current platform wars and why Pokimane might have chosen to stay on Twitch:
· Valkyrae has had the highest percent increase in viewership since switching to YouTube Gaming: she has hit a peak CCV of 154,000, a 350% increase from her time on Twitch.
· CouRage had a similar increase in viewership, with an 81% increase since switching to YouTube Gaming.
Both of these streamers have been on YouTube for at least two years, giving them time to rebuild their audiences and brands on the platform. It’s hard to say whether Pokimane would have increased her viewership if she had switched to YouTube Gaming. However, for some streamers, the switch was a no-brainer. It will be interesting to keep track of channels who are newer to the platform, and see how they do over time.
For more insights on the platform war, read Stream Hatchet’s full blog post. SPONSORSHIP & ACTIVATION
Amazon’s Prime Gaming joined the VALORANT Champions Tour EMEA as an official partner for the 2022 season. The deal sees Prime Gaming help power the analyst desk by presenting the Post-Match Highlights after every game of the main VCT season. “We are thrilled to continue our collaboration with Riot Games as a sponsor of the upcoming VCT EMEA Challenger Series, and we wish every participant luck in the tournament,” said Larry Plotnick, GM, Prime Gaming. “Riot’s games offer the pinnacle of Esports competition, and we are excited to celebrate everyone involved by together rewarding Amazon Prime members with monthly exclusive in-game content throughout 2022.”
A major partnership between Oracle and Red Bull Racing under the team name, Oracle Red Bull Racing, will also see the debut of Oracle Red Bull Racing Esports. The partnership will see the Team will use OCI-powered analytics to “optimize car set up, improve race strategy, and provide its drivers with training that can help them consistently post ideal lap times on any virtual track, in any simulated weather.”
Immortals and Bitstamp, a cryptocurrency exchange, announced a three-year deal that sees Bitstamp become a Founding Partner and the Official Cryptocurrency Exchange of Immortals. The This partnership allows Immortals and its talent explore future crypto integrations and NFT activations. Initiatives include Team Bitstamp (a team of content creators that will serve as Bitstamp brand ambassadors); Immortals Invasion; and the Immortals LCS Trigger Program. “It’s a priority for us as an organization to show up for our community and bring them value through innovative partnerships like this one with Bitstamp, the longest-running crypto exchange in the world,” said Jordan Sherman, Immortals’ CEO. “This partnership will further enhance the Immortals fan experience with real, tangible benefits that connect the crypto and gaming worlds.” 2022 MEASUREMENT & DATA CONFERENCE: AGENDA RELEASED
Sessions released including alternative currencies, advertising on OTT platforms, programmatic, measuring diversity and more.
VISIT THE AGENDA PLATFORMS
BLAST Premier announced a record 35 global media rights deals for its 2022 season with broadcasts now lined up in over 130 TV territories and watched in 25 languages. Broadcasters include: public broadcaster TV2 (Denmark), TV network Astro (Asia), OTT service StarTimes (Africa), popular streamer Gaules (Brazil) and online streaming service WePlay (Russia). “We are delighted to start the 2022 season with the widest distribution in our history,” said Alexander Lewin, VP of Distribution and Programming at BLAST. “BLAST Premier has been on a path of rapid growth since inception two years ago and is now available in over 25 languages worldwide. We are thrilled to extend our relationship with the vast majority of our existing licensees as well as welcome so many new partners to the BLAST family.” TEAMS
The NFL and FaZe Clan announced a joint marketing initiative to host a series of content activations and brand collaborations “with the goal of cross-pollinating audiences and furthering the prominent cultural convergence of traditional sports and gaming communities.” Kicking things off, on Feb. 12, the NFL and FaZe Clan will host a co-branded flag football game during the Super Bowl Experience Presented by Lowe’s. “Gaming continues to be a core pillar within the broader NFL strategy, and we are excited to announce a joint marketing initiative with FaZe Clan that will kick off with a co-branded flag football game at this year’s Super Bowl Experience presented by Lowe’s. In addition, our enhanced relationship will include first-ever activations and initiatives throughout the 2022-2023 season aimed at engaging our casual Gen Z fans,” said Ian Trombetta, SVP, Social, Influencer & Content Marketing at the NFL. “Teaming up with FaZe enables us to leverage our platforms to authentically engage with and celebrate the next generation of fans at the intersection of gaming, football, and culture.”
James Madison University joined as a formal member of the Eastern College Athletic Conference. “JMU X-Labs is excited to join the ECAC and the competitive opportunities now available to our emerging esports program,” said JMU X-Labs Executive Director Nick Swayne. “We are excited for our students to have access to challenging tournaments and competitive league play. For both virtual and face-to-face competition, ECAC offers exactly what we need to transition into the best of esports.” INDUSTRY
Microsoft confirmed that Call of Duty and other Activision Blizzard titles will be available for Nintendo and PlayStation “beyond the existing agreement and into the future.” As the company seeks approval for its acquisition of Activision Blizzard, Xbox honcho Brad Smith stated that “To be clear, Microsoft will continue to make Call of Duty and other popular Activision Blizzard titles available on PlayStation through the term of any existing agreement with Activision. And we have committed to Sony that we will also make them available on PlayStation beyond the existing agreement and into the future so that Sony fans can continue to enjoy the games they love.” ROSTER MOVES
Evil Geniuses announced the hiring of former New York Islanders executive Leonard Edwards as the company’s Vice President and Head of Global Partnerships. Edwards will oversee Evil Geniuses’ Sales division. READYUP EVENTS OF THE WEEK CELEBRATE THE BEST OF THE BEST
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Check out more jobs in Cynopsis Classifieds » Job of the day PRODUCER, THE FAMILY HANDYMAN, STREAMING TV
Produce curated and original series for Streaming TV in the DIY and home genre first, and other genres second. Maintain and influence creative alignment with the Channel and Brands. Contribute to the ideation of new show concepts in the DIY space. 4+ Years Production Experience (digital & linear) in the DIY/Home genre. Full info HERE (3/6)
DIRECTOR, CURRENT PROGRAMMING & DEVELOPMENT, STREAMING TV
Establish long-term creative programming strategy to achieve business unit KPIs (audience, sales, distribution). Detail plans and budget to help develop, help commission, and acquire programming. Ideate show concepts to fit our numerous brands on a daily basis. 7+ years in creative production for digital / streaming / television. Full info HERE (2/24)
WEST COAST (REMOTE – SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA)
Responsible for pre-sale planning & post-sale management & execution. Working closely with operations & sales on trafficking & QA for ad campaigns including scheduling, inventory requests, & production timelines. Helping sales & marketing put together pitch decks for client meetings and formal RFPs. 2-5 yrs prior exp in the advertising/media space. Full info HERE (2/24)
ACCOUNT SERVICE REPRESENTATIVE
Work closely with Directors/Account Executives in positioning the network (Linear & Digital) to new and existing clients. Communicate with major agencies/clients serving a key role in the sales process. Collaborate internally with various departments to provide solutions for advertisers. 3+ years in media. Full info HERE (2/24)
DIRECTOR, SCHEDULING & ACQUISITIONS
SILVER SPRING, MD
Develop programming strategies/schedules that achieve or exceed rating & revenue goals. Manage the production of network schedule grids & identify, evaluate & secure acquisition opportunities utilizing data to make optimal acquisition decisions. Min of 5 yrs of prior program scheduling & acquisition experience in cable/digital channel or network. Full info HERE (2/24)
ART DIRECTOR, GLOBAL CREATIVE CONTENT
NYC OR REMOTE
Creative lead in print, promotion, & marketing from concept to completion. Conceive, design and direct the production of key art, sales tools and collateral to position & sell our brands & content globally. Translate business objectives into campaigns that viewership. Must have 5+ years and Must LOVE television (Reality, Scripted & Non-Fiction.) Full info HERE (2/23)
DIRECTOR OF SOCIAL MEDIA & DIGITAL CONTENT >>
REELZ/ALBUQUERQUE, NM: Oversee day-to-day management of social campaigns. Develop social media campaigns that drive brand engagement. Proven track record of using social platforms, user generated content and influencer management. Ability to place targeted buys on social and digital platforms. 7 to 10 yrs’ exp with website operations and social media management. Full info HERE (2/23)
RESEARCH CONSULTANT – TEMPORARY POSITION >>
REELZ/NYC: 7+ years of experience developing strategic approaches to position Reelz in the advertising marketplace and support programming. Ideal applicant will have a passion for media research, possess relevant experience, and need little supervision. Proficient with Nielsen audience data and systems. Full info HERE (2/23)
DIRECTOR OF SALES
REMOTE (PREFER NYC, CHICAGO, NASHVILLE)
Year over year growth of our advertising sales projections. Source, create, and maintain relationships, as well as execute contracts for our Linear/Cable/VOD networks. Management of the pre and post sales process will be executed against a yearly goal. Use of qualitative sales packaging and the drive to meet/exceed sales goals is a top priority. Full info HERE (2/22)
Manage relationships w/ high school administrators & athletic directors to increase production quality & quantity of broadcast events. Manage, route, & track school’s technical issues until they are resolved. Assist with school’s marketing needs to build awareness & grow revenue. 2+ yrs exp in cust service or acct mgt. Exp w/ CRM tools. Full info HERE (2/21)
VIDEO PROGRAMMING MANAGER
Mainly programming original & licensed video content for our mobile & OTT apps. This role includes identifying our original video content, facilitating & driving the company’s licensed video content to distribute through our OTT, mobile apps & digital platforms. Duties also include scheduling, curation & successful playout of this content. Full info HERE (2/21)
SOCIAL MULTIMEDIA DESIGNER/VIDEO EDITOR
Video editor/multimedia designer to edit compelling original social video and graphic design content for all social platforms. Full info HERE (2/21)
DIRECTOR OF VIDEO
Will provide oversight and leadership for video content and editorial content associated with African American news, culture and lifestyle stories, and other interactive content that compliments specific programming themes and brand initiatives across theGrio’s. Full info HERE (2/21)
ASSISTANT MEDIA NEGOTIATOR >>
LOCKARD & WECHSLER DIRECT /IRVINGTON NY: Supports media negotiators in buying airtime in their assigned broadcast/cable networks. Assists with the preliminary research on availability of airtime and rates. Enter media rates, solve media discrepancies, update internal data. Pull daily reports and Nielsen ratings. Self-motivated, well-organized multitasker who is eager to learn. Full info HERE (2/20)
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE III, SALES
NEXSTAR MEDIA GROUP/WKRN
Implements strategies to consistently grow revenue and exceed revenue goals. Establishes credible relationships with local business community. Makes sales calls on existing and prospective clients. Maintains assigned accounts and develops new accounts. Minimum one year’s experience in sales, preferably in media or digital sales. Full info HERE (2/20)
CREATIVE PROJECT MANAGER >>
VIACOMCBS/MIAMI FL: Manages global projects/campaigns/Asset production through the entire lifecycle: planning, creative, production, delivery, and wrap. Defines project scope, including timeline, resources, labor hours, & external costs. Manages, organizes, and distributes all project documentation. 6+ yrs’ exp in creative project management of work across the media. Full info HERE (2/20)
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATE (LEAD GENERATION) >>
HEARST MEDIA PRODUCTION GROUP: Initiate lead generation strategies that include outbound sales marketing campaigns. Identify, prospect, and lead introductory meetings to qualify leads for Business Development Executives. Create & deliver a detailed dossier on prospect – for seamless transition to Business Development Executive. 3+ yrs of relevant business development experience. Full info HERE (2/19)
MEDIA PLANNING COORDINATOR >>
IFC NETWORK/ NY: Strategically schedule/enter promos. Monitor programming ensuring promo assets are accurate. Work with Traffic on logs/formats. Review asset delivery/screen content. Proficient in Office, exp w/ sched software, background in media. Detail-oriented/Ability to prioritize/Meet deadlines. Full info HERE (2/19)
SCHEDULING COORDINATOR >>
AMC NETWORKS/NYC, NY: Daily input of schedules for multiple nets. Work with Ops and Media Planning on program delivery, formats & versions. Maintain tracking docs, work with large amts of detailed info & tight deadlines. Acute attn to detail. Proficient in Excel, exp w/ sched software, background in media. Full info HERE (2/19)
SENIOR MANAGER ACCOUNT MANAGEMENT
REMOTE, LOS ANGELES OR NEW YORK
We are looking for talent who will help to build the foundation for a long-term business. Candidates should have sales planning and client success management experience. Extensive background in traditional linear and digital media sponsorship sales, and the overall support of multi-year, value-driven partnerships. Full info HERE (2/18)
REMOTE, LOS ANGELES OR NEW YORK
Candidates should have extensive experience in consultative sales, working with brands to develop strategic and long-term partnerships. You will represent a portfolio of Gaming, Esports and Entertainment offerings that are some of the best in the world. Ideal candidates have experience thinking strategically and creatively for their partners. Full info HERE (2/18)
REMOTE, LOS ANGELES OR NEW YORK
Candidates should have sales planning and client success management experience. Background in account management for digital media sales (and linear preferred) operations. The Account Manager will be responsible for managing the day-to-day sales operations partnership relationships and campaign management. Full info HERE (2/18)
PROJECT MANAGER >>
TLC/SIVER/SPRING, NYC: If you’re passionate about entertainment here’s your chance to get a job with a leading television brand with women! TLC is looking to hire a Project Manager position on the Marketing team (through staffing agency YOH). If you are looking for a fast paced, creative and strategic place to grow apply here. Full info HERE (2/17)
INSIDE SALES REPRESENTATIVE >>
AXS TV/TORONTO: Responsible for building & maintaining ad sales bookings &d weekly advertiser branding in a timely manner. Liaised with client & traffic department to ensure copy was received & instructions were applied. Resolve discrepancies related to Core business deals. 1-2 yrs exp working with advertising agencies/television traffic departments is preferred. Full info HERE (2/17)
DIRECTOR, FINISHED PROGRAM ACQUISITIONS AND DISTRIBUTION, STREAMING TV
Source and identify finished TV program and digital series acquisitions for Streaming FAST Channels. License our TMB/Jukin original Streaming Channel productions for distribution. Responsible for negotiating and closing both inbound and outbound deals. 7 years of relevant work experience at a media company, ie program sales/program acquisitions. Full info HERE (2/16)
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE (BRAND ADVERTISERS) >>
HEARST MEDIA PRODUCTION GROUP: Establish and maintain senior-level relationships, develop and pitch unique mission-driven programs, and negotiate long-term partnership agreements with brands and advertisers. Support creation and present strategic, cross-media concepts to multiple stakeholder groups. 10 + years of relevant business development experience. Full info HERE (2/16)
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE (FOUNDATIONS/NON-PROFITS) >>
HEARST MEDIA PRODUCTION GROUP: Establish and maintain senior-level relationships, develop and pitch unique mission-driven programs, and negotiate long-term partnership agreements with non-profits and foundations. Support creation and present strategic, cross-media concepts to multiple stakeholder groups. 10 + years of relevant business development experience. Full info HERE (2/15)
Cadent is looking to hire a Broadcast Planner to join our fast-growing team! In this role you will work closely with Sales to build proposals & media plans, assist with pricing for ad packages and work closely with operations to finalize orders. If you have broadcast experience and enjoy working with numbers, we would love to speak with you! Full info HERE (2/15)
DIRECTOR COMMUNICATIONS, PRODUCTION & DISTRIBUTION >>
BLUE ANT MEDIA/NYC: Build and implement strategic and results-driven trade marketing and PR plans with a focus on the U.S. and U.K. markets. Execution on all announcements from the production and distribution teams. Writing and routing releases, Op-eds and written interviews and manage PR agency relationships. Minimum eight yrs of experience in a media relations role. Full info HERE (2/15) OTHER JOBS OF INTEREST
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