Good morning! This is your weekly Esports Brief.
Gray Television is getting in the game,
leading a $40 million investment round for Envy Gaming. As the lead investor in Envy’s Series C round, Gray will invest $28.5 million and name two directors to the Envy Gaming board of directors. Gray is one of the largest owners of television stations in the U.S., reaching approximately 24% of U.S. television households and carrying over 500 separate programming streams, including roughly 160 affiliates of the Big Four broadcast networks.
“Esports and gaming is the fastest-growing area across all of media and entertainment,” said Adam Rymer, CEO of Envy Gaming. “Building global communities through content and engagement, similar to what the world has seen in the music, film and TV industries, is an endeavor we’re incredibly excited to work on with Gray as our partner.”
ESL is partnering with KRAFTON to launch a new series of tournaments dedicated to competitive PUBG. The company announced plans to host
ESL PUBG Masters & ESL PUBG Open tournaments this year with a quartet of ESL PUBG Masters tournaments split between two regions; Americas, and Europe, in addition to three ESL PUBG Open tournaments to Europe. Phase one in the Americas begins April 7-8.
The inaugural North American VALORANT Masters tournament is on deck, with Riot unveiling its roster of talent for play, which begins today and runs through March 21. The caster lineup includes Daniel “ddk” Kapadia and Sean Gares, along with Rivington “RivingtonThe3rd” Bisland III and Doug “EsportsDoug” Cortez. Analysts include Mark “boq” Wilson and Alex “Vansilli” Nguyen, who join Christine “potter” Chi on the desk, along with Loviel “Velly” Cardwell and Sue “Smix” Lee.
Speaking of VALORANT, Nerd Street Gamers is being tapped as the official tournament operator and producer for two upcoming VALORANT initiatives. Nerd Street Gamers will operate and produce all three North American stages of Riot Games’ 2021 VALORANT Champions Tour along with the first tournament in Riot Games’ VALORANT Game Changers Series.
On the collegiate front, the National Association of Collegiate Esports is partnering with the Southwestern Athletic Conference to assist with the launch of their inner conference competitive esports league. The league schedule will consist of a four-week regular season format with two weeks of post season play to determine team champions in each game title. This will include broadcasting competitions to promote esports within the conference to give SWAC schools the opportunity to develop their programs with NACE support.
Also, Mainline teamed up with Steel Planet Esports, an affiliated venture of college multi-media rights holder Steel Curtain U, to assist in the management of esports rights for a number of Division II, Division III, NAIA and community college conferences and universities under the newly created entity, Launch Esports. One of the first conferences to utilize Launch Esports is Conference Carolinas with additional conferences to be announced in the coming weeks.
The 2021 eMLS Cup presented by Coca-Cola is set for March 20 and 21, with the top 11 players from the overall standings for 2021 already qualified for the tournament, with the top four going straight to the quarterfinals. Remaining players will compete for the final spot in the playoffs in their own bracket tournament, the Last Chance Qualifier on March 16-17. The opening rounds of eMLS Cup take place on March 20 and begin at 3 pm ET. The quarterfinals, semifinals, and final will take place the following day, March 21 with fans able to watch via Titch, Titter, YouTube and Facebook as well as MLSsoccer.com and the MLS App.
Get your tickets here! The EBS team is producing the Esports Business Summit University on March 23-24: a 2-day virtual conference focused on the business of collegiate esports. We’ll go inside topics such as sponsorships, scholarships, recruitment, funding, and so much more. Hear from the Activision Blizzard, Ubisoft, the West Coast Conference, CSL Esports, EGF, Learfield IMG, Skillshot Media, WWSEF/NASEF, Mountain West Conference, BoomTV/AVGL, NIRSA, NACE, FACEIT, Nerd Street Gamers, Twitch and more! It’s going to be an incredible learning opportunity and we hope you’ll join us. Register now!
STREAM HATCHET TRENDS
For the past three years, the Battle Royale Genre has captivated live streaming audiences on Twitch, YouTube Gaming and Facebook
. Fortnite and PUBG have managed to sustain respectable audiences and player bases for multiple years. Activision / Blizzard and Electronic Arts have followed the trend, and sustain sizable audiences around their game titles Call of Duty: Warzone and Apex Legends. This week, our insights examine a cut of streaming activity in February 2021:
· Over 1/2 of Battle Royale live streams are watched on Twitch: Last month, Twitch viewers watched over 275 million hours of battle royale game play. The remaining 264M hours of content are split fairly evenly between Facebook and YouTube Gaming.
· Mobile Gaming Audiences are concentrated heavily around Facebook and YouTube Gaming: Only 6% of the watch hours of the top two mobile battle royale games (Garena Free Fire and PUBG Mobile) are watched on Twitch. YouTube (36%) and Facebook Gaming (58%) account for a combined 204M live stream hours watched.
For more data on how to reach gaming fans through esports and influencer marketing, visit us online at: www.StreamHatchet.com
Gillette is ordering another round of the Gillette Gaming Alliance
with the 2021 version of the event set to feature 11 streamers including theGrefg, Dr Lupo and Lando Norris who will create content for their specific region and serve as an official representative for the brand. Other brand representatives will include 2DeeJay Knight
and one other name TBD in Japan.
Miller Lite launched of the Miller Lite Level Up Fund, a $100,000 grant program that aims to provide financial support to uncelebrated communities in the gaming world. The reveal coincided with International Women’s Day on Monday, with the Fund designed to raise awareness for the inspiring female streamers that “deserve greater recognition and access to resources, compared to what their male counterparts receive.” “Miller Lite has a strong connection to the gaming community and has partnered with uncelebrated communities in the past,” said Lauren Cassel, associate marketing manager for Miller Lite. “Launching the Miller Lite Level Up Fund on International Women’s Day and spotlighting the incredible women in gaming is just the beginning. Throughout the year, we will also shine light on and support LGBTQ+, Latinx, and Black gamers so they also get the recognition they deserve.”
Hey brands! Request an exclusive invite to the Cynopsis Sports & Esports Newfront where brand execs and their reps will be able to learn about the slate of opportunities from the sports and esports business from established leagues to new ones. This 2-day event is designed with ample networking time so that select attendees can connect to discuss session content, and other recent developments.
ESL Gaming announced 1xBet as the first-ever exclusive global betting partner of the ESL Pro Tour CS:GO and ESL One Summer & Winter Dota 2 running throughout the entirety of 2021 and up to IEM Katowice 2022. The global partnership will see 1xBet and ESL partner to “enhance the overall experience for esports players and fans” with planned innovations that include bringing special custom segments such as data driven player impact cards, match predictions, and custom maps throughout the year in both CS:GO and Dota 2 broadcasts.
FACEIT locked in a deal with HyperX to serve as the first sponsor of its CS:GO, League of Legends, and VALORANT collegiate leagues. The pair will host and produce the HyperX Collegiate All Stars tournament to showcase collegiate talent across all three leagues.
Esports Entertainment entered a sponsorship deal with Kraft Sports and Entertainment, and will now provide online gambling services with a specific focus on esports, and include teams such as the New England Patriots and New England Revolution. Esports Entertainment will be able to act as the official sponsor and provider of the official esports tournaments associated with the league.
Evil Geniuses is tapping Bud Light as its newest partner and as the official beer of the team. The partnership will give fans access to in-game communications of the EG League of Legends squad in “Evil Intercepts” content series while names such as Swim, FearItself, dekillsage, SonicFox, and others take turns broadcasting on “Bud Light Streams” hosted on Bud Light’s Twitch channel. “Evil Geniuses is honored to welcome Bud Light into the EG family,” said Michael Fudzinski, chief revenue officer at Evil Geniuses. “Bud Light is renowned for their support of elite organizations across sports and entertainment, and the pairing with EG and our 21+ year history represents the latest continuation of this legacy that our fans and the community will celebrate.”
FYX Gaming, the esports infrastructure and technology provider specializing in the development of blockchain-based solutions, entered into a partnership with esports betting operator Unikrn that will see the two companies collaborate to deliver next-generation iGaming products and technology, including the inclusion of CryptoFights on Unikrn Virtual
The North America Scholastic Esports Federation revealed the next version of their scrim finding tool, Scrimfinder+, for high school esports Clubs across North America, offering an expanded roster of supported game titles that can be played on a variety of devices and platforms. Features updated in Scrimfinder+ include: an expanded roster of games supported from 3 to 13; suggested competition nights to build community and increase your chances of finding a similar Club; and a NASEF safe “ecosystem.”
SPORTS + ESPORTS NEWFRONTS
Presented by: Cynopsis Sports & Esports Business Summit
Wednesday, April 21 – Thursday, April 22
The event is back by popular demand & expanded to 2 days to feature sports and esports companies! If you’re from a Fortune1000 company or an agency which supports a Fortune1000 brand, join us for a virtual experience on how to activate your brand with the highly-prized fanbase watching and engaging in sports & esports.
The 2021 presentation line-up will be announced soon!
REQUEST YOUR INVITE >
The Washington Justice opened a new team facility in Penn Quarter
, Washington, D.C. that will serve as the home to Justice players for their daily practices and official competitions as well as play host for fan events and a full retail shop experience. “When we first launched the Justice, we committed to bringing a best-in-class esports franchise to the DMV region. Following on the incredible success of playing live in front of packed hometown crowds at two Homestands at the iconic Anthem, we are proud to continue finding innovative ways to engage with our fans, even through the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has presented,” said Mark Ein, owner of the Washington Justice. “With our new facility, we will be able to offer our players an unparalleled competitive environment while offering our fans ways to interact more often, and in ways we never could have before, all while being located in the center of downtown D.C.”
Evil Geniuses, in partnership with Women in Games International, announced the launch of Press Forward: Young Women in Gaming, a summit series focused on inspiring young women to pursue career goals in the esports and gaming industry. Kicking off on April 24th, the first event in the series will blend career-focused sessions from esports professional gamers, game designers, entrepreneurs from Riot Games, Amazon, 343 Industries and more.
The University of Kentucky and Gen.G are launching an esports invitational taking place March 12-14. Competitors will include Auburn University, Mississippi State University, Texas A&M University, University of Alabama, University of Georgia, University of Kentucky, University of Mississippi, University of Missouri, and University of Tennessee. The Invitational is the first time that all of the schools will be competing in the same esports tournament. Student casters from UK will cast the entire event featuring the titles Rocket League, League of Legends and VALORANT.
Allied Esports Entertainment received an unsolicited proposal from Bally’s Corporation
to acquire all of the outstanding equity interests of the Company for a total consideration of $100 million. The Bally’s proposal would require the Company to terminate its previously announced agreement with Element Partners to sell all of the equity interests of Club Services, including the entities comprising the World Poker Tour.
ReKTGlobal acquired TalentX Entertainment, the social media monetization and talent development company. This acquisition consolidates ReKTGlobal’s previous joint venture with TalentX, TalentX Gaming (TXG), and TalentX Entertainment into ReKTX, ReKTGlobal’s new talent management arm. “Creators have become one of the most influential segments of every major industry,” said Amish Shah, Founder of ReKTGlobal. “We’re incredibly bullish on this idea of the ‘creator economy,’ so with our already close-knit relationship with TalentX, bringing them into the ReKTGlobal family was a great addition to our diversified portfolio of assets.”
Sports business agency SPORTFIVE announced the acquisition of Germany based esports consulting and activation agency build a rocket. The newly acquired company will remain as an independent brand in the market place and obtain the endorsement title “A SPORTFIVE Company”. Alexander Albrecht and Tobias Heim will continue to serve as Managing Directors of build a rocket and will report into Eike Gyllensvärd,
A report from Business Insider’s Insider Intelligence projects that esports viewership is expected to grow at a 9% compound annual growth rate between 2019 and 2023, up from 454 million in 2019 to 646 million in 2023. That puts the esports audience on pace to nearly double over a six-year period.
Former execs from the likes of Riot Games, Blizzard, Valve, and Bungie teamed up and raised $37.5 million to launch a new game studio, titled Theorycraft Games. Led by NetEase, Inc., and including investments from NEA, BITKRAFT Ventures, Griffin Gaming Partners, SISU Game Ventures, and a small group of strategic angel investors, the Series A investment will be used to recruit diverse and driven talent to the Theorycraft team to develop a community-driven, PvP game available across multiple platforms. Execs include Joe Tung, CEO and Founder of Theorycraft Games, and the former EVP of League of Legends franchise and EP of Destiny and Halo; Michael Evans, as Chief Technology Officer; Mike Tipul, as Chief Creative Officer; Moby Francke, as Art Director, and Areeb Pirani, as Chief Operating Officer.
FaZe Clan announced that Tammy Brandt is joining the company as its new Chief Legal Officer and Head of Business and Legal Affairs. The news follows the recent addition of Amit Bajaj as CFO and Bill McCullough as the organization’s Executive Vice President of Content. Brandt will be responsible for overseeing all business and legal affairs, M&A and corporate matters, working directly alongside CEO Lee Trink, the Board of Directors and the rest of the Executive Team.
Geoff Sawyer joined global talent and entertainment company UTA as an Agent in the Video Games division. In his newly created role, he will primarily focus on fostering collaborations between UTA’s music clients and the gaming industry. Most recently, Sawyer served as Red Bull’s Director of Global Music Services, where he oversaw the team responsible for music solutions for the entire company.
CAA inked Jessica Blevins, streamer as well as wife and manager of Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, for representation, according to Variety. In addition to managing the Team Ninja brand, Blevins has personally accumulated more than 1.1 million followers on Instagram, 611,000 on Twitter and 468,000 on Twitch.
ESPORTS BUSINESS SUMMIT
Call for Speakers Now Open
We’d like to hear your ideas on program content + invite you to submit a speaker proposal.
Key focus areas: Brand activation & working with sponsors, Content & streaming, Capitalizing on lifestyle opportunities, Data & Technology, Diversity & Inclusion, Experiential engagement, Future forecasts, HS/collegiate & amateur esports, Investment opportunities, Licensing, Production, Teams & Leagues, Venues and more.
> SUBMIT A SPEAKER PROPOSAL <
ON THIS DAY
1991: Zork is first released.
What brain game is pictured above? (Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
What nationality is Lara Croft? Answer: British. Kudos: Joe Olson-Lowe’s/Arlington; Matt Sautter-WideOrbit/Harrisburg; Danny Araque/NY; Bryce O’Roni-IBM/Raleigh; Jason Morrow-Toyota/Houston; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Andy Babb-Super League Gaming/Santa Monica; Peter Steckelman-Tennis Channel/Santa Monica
|PROJECT MANAGER, CREATIVE MARKETING CAMPAIGNS
Lead and track multiple creative projects and timelines simultaneously, work with agencies and marketing teams to assess initial requests for information, project parameters and priority scheduling. Significant experience working in production management/digital marketing/creative agency and/or professional services/consulting required. Full in HERE (3/24)
TEMP COORDINATOR, ON AIR >>
SCH/GSN/SM: 1+ yrs. w/ traffic exp. is a plus, communicating, scheduling, data entry, hands on coordination, log changes/revised promo scheduling/run logs and reports/ensure correct promo elements etc. Team player with strong attention to detail and strong time management. Full info HERE (3/24)
DIRECTOR OF CONTENT DEVELOPMENT & PRODUCTION >>
APM STUDIOS/ST PAUL MN: Develop and create innovative, high quality content. Set editorial vision and brand voice for APM Studios’ new podcasts and their product development across platforms and formats. Lead collaborations with external media and distribution partners. 10+ years’ experience in media, 4+ years management experience required. Full info HERE (3/23)
DIRECTOR, PROGRAMMATIC SALES (CTV) >>
ORIGIN MEDIA/REMOTE: Striking partnerships with DSPs, agencies, brands, and agency trading desks to integrate with Origin’s programmatic solutions. Sourcing and managing PMP/PG business and adopt existing clients and grow their relationships. 5+ years of programmatic advertising video sales experience. CTV experience is a plus. Full info HERE (3/22)
OPERATIONS ASSOCIATE (DIGITAL/CTV) >>
ORIGIN MEDIA/REMOTE: Oversee administrative tasks, work with Sales to assist in the production, maintenance, and delivery of sales materials and RFPs from advertisers. Manage contracts with in-house legal counsel and organize and manage all company contracts and documents. 1-3 years of experience in sales or operations and familiarity with the Google Suite of products. Full info HERE (3/22)
HEAD OF GLOBAL PROCUREMENT >>
NEP GROUP/EASTERN US-LONDON: Establish a global purchasing community and build procurement capability to ensure a consistent approach to negotiations with key suppliers. Design and implement a global procurement strategy to add value and efficiency to the organization. and Understand global needs and lead negotiations. Fifteen years of industry-related experience in procurement required. Full info HERE (3/22)
SALES PLANNER >>
MARATHON VENTURE/NYC: Serve as the primary point of contact for our media partners, responsible for exceeding expectations by effectively anticipating and solving problems. Review client orders for accuracy and resolve discrepancies. 2-3 years related experience and strong organizational skills and attention to detail required. Full info HERE (3/19)
SENIOR MANAGER OF MARKETING OPERATIONS >>
ITVS/San Francisco: Optimize project management processes to create sustainable, scalable standards and best practices that improve cross-functional collaboration and long-range planning. Set, manage, and execute our audience development workflows. Identify, plan, and execute effective, “right-size” workflows. 5-7 years of professional experience in project management and communications required. Full info HERE (3/19)
MANAGER, DIGITAL CONTENT PROGRAMMING >>
FILMRISE/BROOKLYN NY: Manage clients for various emerging OTT verticals including but not limited to US Hispanic and Latin American/Brazilian platforms. Coordinate delivery of new content and looking for new ways to optimize revenue. Experience working in international digital content programming/ sales; familiarity with various platforms and Spanish language fluency required. Full info HERE (3/19)
INTEGRATED MARKETING MANAGER >>
REVOLT TV/LOS ANGELES: Managing branded content projects, ensuring the flawless execution of sold concepts through to delivery across media platforms. Tracks projects through all phases; from requests through approvals and distribution. 3+ years in creative/digital project manager role at a related production house/agency. Full info HERE (3/18)
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, SCRIPTED SALES & CO-PRODUCTIONS >>
BBC AMERICA/LOS ANGELES CA: Managing sales and co-production activity with designated clients across both television and digital. Keep in constant contact with all key US buyers pitching upcoming programmes –for both TV and SVOD sales. 7+ years of experience at executive level within programming and/or distribution. In-depth understanding of the UK television industry, in particular the BBC. Full info HERE (3/18)
SALES ASSISTANT – NATIONAL >>
UPtv/NYC, NY: Provide full support to all accounts for the Ad Sales team, assist Account Executives, Sales Planner and Pricing Inventory in managing day-to-day Ad sales responsibilities. Communicate daily with Traffic Department, and create and maintain quarterly flighting grid. B.A. in Communication or equivalent from a four-year college; prior experience a plus. Full info HERE (3/18)
COUNSEL, BUSINESS & LEGAL AFFAIRS >>
MLB NETWORK/SECAUCUS, NJ: Strong knowledge and understanding of legal and business issues related to media, strong negotiation and drafting skills and a solid understanding of business issues. Draft and/or negotiate a wide variety of agreements and contract summary/tracking/management. A minimum of two years of legal experience in a media and/or entertainment transactional environment either in-house or with a law firm is required. Full info HERE (3/17)
VICE PRESIDENT, GENERAL MANAGER >>
NEXSTAR INC., KRON4-MYNETWORK/SAN FRANCISCO: Leading broadcast operational teams with sales-driven organizations, developing locally originated content, and commitment to community service. Track record of high performance in developing revenue across multiple platforms. Minimum of five years of general management experience at a commercial broadcast television station with accompanying digital assets required. Full info HERE (3/17)
COMMUNITY MANAGER >>
JUKIN MEDIA/LOS ANGELES: Set overall community strategy as it relates to supporting brand initiatives, structure implementation of community-facing strategy across FailArmy, communicate on behalf of the brand across multiple channels. Min 3 yrs experience in brand communications, strong expertise in and a passion for current and emerging social and OTT platforms. Full info HERE (3/17)
DIRECTOR, CURRENT PROGRAMMING >>
JUKIN MEDIA/LOS ANGELES: Responsible for overseeing, guiding and elevating all programming for each of the Streaming TV channels, Works with VP Streaming to establish long-term creative programming strategy to achieve business unit KPIs. Plan and budget to help develop, help commission, and acquire programming for Jukin streaming channels. 7+ years in creative production for digital/streaming/television required. Full info HERE (3/17)
DIGITAL MANAGING DIRECTOR >>
SPECTRUM NETWORKS/NYC: Lead the talented and resourceful journalists, manage digital teams in multiple locations and editorial content; encourage innovation and unique story telling techniques. Impeccable integrity and ability to support our writers and editors in making tough journalistic calls in fast-moving news cycles. Full info HERE (3/17)
SENIOR MANAGER, NEWS & CONTENT >>
SPECTRUM NETWORKS/NYC: Actively and consistently support all efforts to simplify and enhance the customer experience, ability to oversee production of Live Newscasts. Drive integration and collaboration with other managers to achieve station goals. Work closely with other managers to determine daily scope of coverage. Full info HERE (3/17)
MANAGER, PROGRAM & CONTENT STRATEGY >>
CNN/NYC OR REMOTE: Creates schedules/rollout plans for series/films, live news, and special events on CNN & HLN. Manages inventory and evaluates performance to optimize usage. TV Programming exp, 5+ yrs. Can project manage/multi-task. Must know current events. Full info/apply HERE (3/17)
DIRECTOR OF PRIME TIME TELEVISION >>
THE JIM HENSON COMPANY/ HOLLYWOOD: Responsible for building out relationships with writers, directors, agents, managers, and talent in the prime-time arena, identifying new projects and talent in both comedy and drama for live-action and animation, and will oversee development of series to pitch A background in prime time television required and demonstrated knowledge of television development and production processes a must. Full info HERE (3/17)
VP of GAMING and ESPORTS >>
GRAVITY ROAD/NYC: Gravity Road is a creative company bringing together marketing, entertainment, and technology to create things people want to spend time with. We are looking for someone that is a commercially minded gamer, a strategic thinker and a proactive doer to join as our VP Gaming and Esports. Full info HERE (3/17)
LIMITED EXCEL SKILLS IMPACTING EFFICIENCY? >>
MY SOFTWARE TUTOR: offers company-centric, customizable, practical Excel training led by a live instructor. We deliver functional business skills to you and your team in a safe, supportive environment. Use promo code: CYNOPSIS20 to unlock a 20% savings on each registration. Full info HERE. (3/14)
OTHER JOBS OF INTEREST
Creating high quality hand-keyed animations through solid body mechanics and engaging performances.
Senior Cinematic Animator
Work closely with the Art Director, a team of artists, and level designers to assemble and detail game environments.
Senior Environment Artist
Research subject matter relating to the design objective to ensure an authentic experience.
Senior Level Designer
You will be responsible for working and tracking cases from beginning through resolution and performing software and hardware configuration.
Senior Systems Administrator
Develop systems that integrate between various software and across multiple platforms.
Work closely with the Design team to take ideas for creating the ecosystem and turn them into features and services.
Embrace a creative problem-solving approach to creating effects. Develop creative or technical solutions as they arise.
Senior FX Artist
The Pokemon Company
Effectively produce prototypes to quickly iterate on and explore game concepts and technical challenges.
Senior 3D Artist
The Pokemon Company
Contribute to the architecture and design of the software stack for multimedia solutions.
Senior Engineer – Multimedia
Design and develop device drivers for current and future gaming consoles.
Senior Device Driver Software Engineer
Design and maintain the technology and processes to automate data ingestion of forecast, and other data to offer insight and optimization opportunities.
Senior Director, Infrastructure Optimization
Support and collaborate with other departments such as design, animation & AI, to implement complex game features.
Senior Physics Programmer
San Diego CA
Work within a distributed team to design and develop automated workflows using PowerShell/DSC and Chef.
Senior Windows DevOps
San Diego CA
Work with a small and talented team to develop scalable, highly performant platform services.
Senior Software Engineer
Develop relationships with the engineers and understand their career goals and aspirations.