Good morning! It’s Thursday and this is your early morning Esports brief.
BITKRAFT Ventures, an investment platform for gaming and interactive media, announced that Dennis Wong and Ryan Wyatt will be joining the firm as venture partners. In their new positions, Dennis and Ryan will support BITKRAFT with dealflow and portfolio company advice and mentorship. “This is a holy sh** moment for BITKRAFT Ventures. Dennis and Ryan are OGs in gaming and esports with massive industry experience and network, and a passion for games that rivals our own. Dennis and I share decades of entrepreneurship experience and Ryan has been a major driving force for esports and gaming to go mainstream during his time creating and leading the Gaming vertical at YouTube. Working hand in hand with both to support ideas, founders and companies makes me and the entire BITKRAFT team incredibly happy. These two Venture Partners will be a great additional value add not only for BITKRAFT Ventures but for the portfolio companies we serve,” said Jens Hilgers, Founding General Partner of BITKRAFT Ventures.
One month out from DreamHack Dallas, the three-day, immersive gaming lifestyle festival, unlocked additional content for June 3-5, including a Cosplay Championship, BYOC Tournaments, the Collegiate Rocket League 2022 World Championship, and more. Also available throughout the weekend will be a Cosplay lounge, repair station, photo studio. The Collegiate Rocket League 2022 World Championship pitting 16 of the best collegiate teams from around the world, and serve as the first major intercontinental competition for collegiate Rocket League teams and players. In the DreamHack Expo Hall, exhibitors present the world’s newest hardware and software, games, gadgets, gaming gear and swag. They also host activities such as game demos, giveaways, contests and more. Developers and programmers, streamers, pro gamers and other celebrities also frequent the expo.
Overwatch League returns starting today, with the org lining up perks for viewers, including that distribution of 1,500 Overatch 2 PvP beta code every hour, spanning all 13 matches over the period. Fans must watch one hour of the broadcast to be eligible, and are only eligible for drops at the end of any hour in which they watch. Fans with linked accounts will also receive five League Tokens per hour for all matches and double League Token drops for select matches.
Riot Games is going even bigger with Valorant, announcing the introduction of international and domestic leagues as well as a new competitive game mode for potential pro players that kick in next year. For top pros, the publisher is launching three international leagues dedicated to the Americas, Europe and Asia that will host weekly competitions and LAN events with live audiences with the best teams facing off in two Masters events before ending with a Champions event. Throughout the rest of the year, Riot will seek out teams for long-term “permanent partnership.” Selected teams won’t have to pay entry or participation fees, and will instead receive an annual stipend from Riot. Partnered organizations will also have the option to collaborate with the developer on in-game events and branded products. In addition, Riot announced it would launch domestic leagues for up-and-coming talent.
Speaking of Riot, the first international League of Legends event of the year is locked and loaded with the 2022 Mid-Season Invitational ready to rumble. Play begins on May 10 with six matchups, including Saigon Buffalo vs. T1 and Evil Geniuses vs. G2 Esports.
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach discussed plans for the inaugural Olympic Virtual Sports Festival in 2023, and hinted that Singapore could host the event at a luncheon in the country. “In this fast-developing world, you either change or be changed,” he stated. “Singapore is one of the most dynamic countries in Asia and the world. You’re never getting complacent, never standing still. This is something that the IOC wants to follow.”
A new esports event will be live on Saturday, running on Twitch.tv/skaterXLofficial as Skater XL sees the game’s best players compete across all three platforms (8 competitors for PC, PlayStation and Xbox). To commemorate this first-ever Esports event, Skater XL will release a special Tampa Pro Esports Contest DLC Pack for Skater XL, with all proceeds going to the Boards 4 Bros skateboard charity.“Tampa Pro is just this iconic event in skateboarding and we wanted our best players in Skater XL to not just experience the competitive spirit of this event, we wanted them to feel what it’s like to skate at the Skatepark of Tampa with a real championship on the line,” said Easy Day Studios founder Dain Hedgpeth.
Luxury Cars Dominate Auto Brand Twitch Chat April 2022
With the rise of video game live streaming in the last few years, automotive brands have been increasingly active on Twitch and other platforms. Sponsoring Twitch streamers, esports events, and running in-stream branded content can all support a brand’s marketing plan for video game live streaming activations. In turn, viewers turn to Twitch chat to discuss the content, getting more exposure for the brands.
· Last month, luxury car brands dominated the automotive industry Twitch chat, with Ferrari on top at 85k mentions. Ferrari also appeared in chat in the most diverse range of places, with 21k unique channels.
· Mercedes-Benz was second in the top auto brands on Twitch last month with 55k chat mentions across 15k unique channels. Many of these chat mentions were, understandably, made while streamers were playing racing and driving games like Grand Theft Auto V, Forza Horizon 5, and F1 2021.
Read the full post on Stream Hatchet’s blog.
| SPONSORSHIP & ACTIVATION
XSET inked an exclusive partnership with Mavix Gaming, the gaming chair and accessories company. With the deal, Mavix will be XSET’s exclusive gaming chair partner and will outfit XSET’s elite roster of athletes, streamers, and esports teams with the Mavix chair of their choice. In addition, the Mavix logo will be featured across all XSET social headers, and featured on all competitive jerseys. Also included in the partnership is the development of co-branded merchandise as well as a limited edition co-branded chair collaboration to be released later this year.
The NHL announced that League corporate partners — Great Clips, Honda, Navy Federal Credit Union and Scotiabank — have returned as sponsors for the 2022 NHL Gaming World Championship campaign. “The League is proud to welcome back Scotiabank, Honda, Great Clips and Navy Federal Credit Union, four committed corporate partners who have been a big part of making the NHL Gaming World Championship a great success,” said Chris Golier, NHL Vice President of Business Development and Innovation. “Collectively, we have built this powerful platform to engage younger hockey fans around the world, and in its fifth season has become the most dramatic and competitive hockey championship off the ice. This season, our sponsors will bring world class content to the community around our virtual and in-person events to show the passion of fans — whether they are ‘EA SPORTS NHL 22’ players or virtual spectators.” The NHL GWC North American Xbox Console Semifinals drops the puck on the 2022 NHL Gaming World Championship live stream schedule beginning May 14 at noon on NHL and ELEAGUE TV Twitch.
Complexity Gaming signed on for an expanded partnership with the U.S. Army Installation Management Command’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (Army MWR) to host the largest installation of the duo’s Soldier Showdown tournament series to date. This year’s tournament will feature a 23-week season kicking off on May 28. Each week, active duty military personnel will have an opportunity to go head-to-head across five of the most popular game titles – Halo Infinite, EA SPORTS Madden NFL 22, Call of Duty Warzone, Rocket League, and Apex Legends – to climb the ranks on the Global Leaderboard.
State Universities of New York locked in a partnership to become the Official Education Partner of Nets Gaming Crew, the NBA 2K League affiliate of the Brooklyn Nets. NetsGC is the first professional esports franchise to team up with SUNY, and as part of the partnership, the organizations will work together to create an educational esports program aimed to boost recruitment pool of high school students, while driving awareness of esports career opportunities available to them after graduation.
FaZe Clan unlocked an exclusive, long-term partnership with Current, a U.S. financial technology platform serving Americans working to create a better future for themselves. The partnership will give FaZe Clan talent “new tools and resources to creatively engage their fans using Current’s mobile banking products.” To launch the partnership, Current is powering the finale episode of “Road to FaZe1.” “Over the past decade, we’ve witnessed FaZe Clan revolutionize gaming and internet culture as true innovators in the creator space,” said Adam Hadi, VP of Marketing, Current. “With this new commitment to each other, we’re able to work together to create meaningful cultural moments and produce content that’s not only engaging but also improves their fans’ financial lives, which furthers our mission at Current.”
SCUF Gaming cemented an expanded six-figure sponsorship deal that names SCUF the Official Controller of the OpTic Texas team in the Call of Duty League, as well as the OpTic Gaming and Envy brands. Elgato, sister brand to SCUF within parent company CORSAIR, will also sponsor the organization outfitting Hector “HECZ” Rodriguez and creators across the OpTic and Envy brands with its industry leading streaming equipment.
|MEASUREMENT & DATA CONFERENCE
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Today will see the launch of FaZe1: The Warehouse, running live starting at 2p and serving as the internet’s newest reality competition series on the FaZe Clan Twitch channel. The series will stream 24 hours a day for 15 consecutive days from the new FaZe Warehouse in Hollywood. Viewers can expect to see individual and group activities that challenge the contestants skills as streamers, brand ambassadors, content creators, and entertainment personalities. The winner of FaZe1 will be given the opportunity to become an official member of FaZe Clan with a signing bonus of $1M in cryptocurrency from MoonPay, a $250K brand deal and a Nissan GT-R. Fans watching could win special giveaways throughout the show including cryptocurrency from MoonPay, FaZe Clan gift cards and merchandise, plus products from partners including HyperX, Respawn and more. Rachel Dimita and Sabastian “FaZe CBass” Diamond host.
At the Cynopsis Esports & Gaming Marketing Showcase, G4 announced a commercial partnership with Smosh, a popular comedy brand on the internet designed to unite “the content and fandoms of two preeminent Millennial and Gen-Z focused entertainment brands, pairing G4’s enormous reach and brand power on screens with Smosh’s unrivaled scale on Creator Economy platforms like YouTube and TikTok” The talent collaboration element of the deal will bring together G4 talent with Smosh stars including Ian Hecox, Shayne Topp, Courtney Miller, Damien Haas, and other faces from the Smosh Cast. The brands will also develop new show formats for both digital and cable platforms, and G4 will distribute some of Smosh’s greatest-hit episodes of popular shows on the G4 network.
Esports Technologies announced a name change to “EBET, INC.” in a move to “better reflect the company’s business and its mission of providing innovative wagering and technology to the Millennial and Gen Z wagering market.” As part of the change, EBET has unveiled a new company logo and launched a rebranded website.
Generation Esports, founder of the High School Esports League, secured $19 million Series B funding round in addition to acquiring content creation platform Wizard Labs Inc. Funding was led by Altos Ventures, which also led the platform’s Series A funding round in May 2021. Meanwhile, the acquisition of Wizard Labs will look to simplify the creation of game videos that are shown on Generation Esports’ platforms.
Complexity Gaming announced its first-ever digital collectible drop in collaboration with ARterra Labs that will feature 2003 free-to-mint digital tokens designed to commemorate the organization’s founding year, as Complexity expands into the Web3 market. “As one of the first esports teams in North America, Complexity’s 2003 digital collectibles are a nod to our deep roots in the space,” said Jason Lake, CEO, Complexity Gaming; Global Head of Esports, GameSquare Esports; and ARterra Labs advisor. “Complexity wouldn’t be where it is today without our fans’ unwavering support. That’s why we’re partnering with ARterra Labs to offer this free digital collection as a token of our appreciation – it’s a chance for our fans to own a piece of Complexity’s history and engage deeper with our players and creators.”
FaZe Clan unveiled their first-ever immersive gaming lounge and retail pop-up store, titled The Armory. Located off Melrose & Fairfax in Los Angeles, the venue will be open to the public on select dates from May 14-June 10 in celebration of FaZe Clan’s foray into gaming products and electronics. The creative vision for The Armory was built from the mind of FaZe Clan’s longtime in-house designer and newly appointed Creative Director Jay Richardson. FaZe Clan teamed up with longtime partner NTWRK to operate. “This is an exciting moment for FaZe and a celebration of the next chapter of our consumer product offerings,” says Derek Chestnut, VP and Head of Consumer Products. “We’ve hosted pop-ups before, but have never had a retail space for this length of time allowing us to curate and program a true FaZe experience. Our goal is to bring gaming culture to life in the heart of the Fairfax streetwear scene while ultimately creating a space for our fans to interact with each other, our talent and our new products.”
Team Liquid and Alienware opened the doors to The Pro Lab, described as a “first-of-its-kind Performance Lab set to transform the competitive gaming industry,” implementing software designed to measure core cognitive skills and brain functions to optimize player performance. The Pro Lab’s testing and software implementation will be managed by Performance scientists and analysts who will collaborate with trainers and staff to continuously evolve the program, make data-informed decisions, implement new approaches as needed, and develop player-specific regimens.
Dignitas is coming for Fortnite, unveiling a new team roster headlined by Piero “pgod” Ramirez, Matthew “Mero” Faitel and Lucas “Dukez” Cardenas. “Dignitas has been scouting for the right opportunity to enter Fortnite, ensuring that our entry into this competitive and culturally relevant title would make a significant splash in the community,” said Dignitas General Manager, James Baker. “We have recruited three of the game’s most successful and promising superstars to lead our competitive Fortnite initiative and are confident pgod, Mero and Dukez will be successful in bringing even more Championships to our ever-growing trophy case.”
Square Enix announced that the company is selling Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montréal and Square Enix Montréal studios to Swedish publisher Embracer Group in a deal valued at $300 million, ending its run as owner of the Tomb Raider games, as well as Deus Ex, Thief and Legacy of Kain franchises. The publisher stated that the deal allows for more cash flow and allows the company to shore up investments in “fields including blockchain, AI, and the cloud.”
rEvolution, the global sports marketing agency, acquired Detroit-based integrated marketing agency Centigrade. Specializing in marketing communications, public relations, experiential activation and motorsports, Centigrade boasts Lamborghini, Lotus, Bugatti, Alfa Romeo, RECARO Automotive, Charge Enterprises and Hagerty Drivers Foundation amongst its client portfolio. “At rEvolution, we center our business on a team of experts. Our people-first approach leads every aspect of our relationship with our clients and partners. The Centigrade team aligned with us in this approach to their business, a critical factor in any acquisition,” said John Rowady, President and Founder, rEvolution. “And as a Detroit native, I am personally excited about investing in a city I love and expanding our presence in the auto industry and overall lifestyle and luxury categories.”
Blizzard officially revealed Warcraft Arclight Rumble for iOS and Android, in which players would build an army of their favorite heroes and villains from the World of Warcraft universe and before starting a slate of tactical-based battles. Blizzard developers call it a “mobile, strategy, fast-paced hero [and villain] collector” with a “vast PvE campaign.” They also say they were inspired by tower defense games, but Arclight Rumble is more of a “tower offense game.”
|CYNOPSIS SPORTS: CMO EXCHANGE 2022
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In honor of Star Wars Day yesterday, what is the name of the frozen planet featured in Empire Strikes Back? (Email email@example.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question
In which entertainment franchise – including movies, books and games – introduced the United Citizen Federation, where service guarantees citizenship? Answer: Starship Troopers. Kudos: Barbara Capella Loehr-Equal Opportunity Publications/NY; C.J. Bottitta-Big Picture Productions/Apex; Rick Dascher-WarnerMedia Studios/Atlanta; Heather Allen-WWE Corporation/Stamford; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank
|DIRECTOR, GLOBAL RIGHTS, RIGHTS LICENSING
NYC or Remote
Oversee the Rights Licensing vertical for the Global Rights team. Will provide licensing guidance, oversee the renewals business & formulate licensing strategies. 12+ yrs req exp actively negotiating & acquiring rights of third party owned material for a television, media or music company with strong Intellectual Property & negotiation experience. Full info HERE
MANAGER, PHYSICAL PRODUCTION >>
AVALON Studio/ NYC or LA: Responsible for managing smaller internal Development or “one-off” shoots. Maintain relationships w/vendors, production staffs & crews. Communicate & distribute project-related information and deliverables to all internal departments. Knowledge of Network, Studio and Show level department structure needed as well as Union and Guild contracts. Full info HERE (5/17)
MANAGER, PARTNER MANAGEMENT AND STRATEGY
Focused on deal negotiation and execution of new media rights as well as operations and delivery of content. Lead ongoing distribution commitments, terms compliance and assist with traditional distribution renewals and new deals! Understand the market landscape and industry trends. Working with other brands and 4+ yrs of working exp. required. Full info HERE (5/16)
DIRECTOR, CONTENT STRATEGY AND PROGRAMMING, STREAMING TV >>
TRUSTED MEDIA BRANDS/CULVER CITY: The Jukin Media/TMB Streaming TV team is seeking an experienced Director of Content Strategy and Programming for our Growth Channels. This position will work with the SVP, Streaming TV to grow our FAST/CTV channel business by launching new O&O channels, building out our CTV app programming and supporting new Streaming TV opportunities. Full info HERE (5/16)
IMPLEMENTATION SPECIALIST >>
WIDEORBIT/REMOTE: WideOrbit is seeking an Implementation Specialist to educate and train clients on WO Network or WO Omni products. A strong preference for WideOrbit product experience and an understanding of Sales Planning/Pricing/Traffic in the international landscape in Canada. Willingness to travel required, and French fluency highly desired. Full info HERE (5/13)
AD SALES PLANNER >>
OUTDOOR SPORTSMAN GROUP /DENVER, NYC OR CHICAGO: Outdoor Sportsman Group is currently seeking an Ad Sales Planner to work closely with Account Executives to create customized media schedules and presentations aligned with the goals and initiatives of ad sales clients. Work in a cross-functional team to plan, implement, and report on account performance aligned with client objectives. Full info HERE (5/12)
PRODUCER, GAMES & WEBSITES >>
FRED ROGERS PRODUCTIONS /PITTSBURGH: Develop ideas for games that are on-brand and deliver on the series mission. Manage schedules and workflows to keep projects on time and on budget. Oversee the Digital Production Assistant in generating and analyzing Google Analytics reports and other metrics. 4+ years production experience making games, websites, apps or other digital content. Full info HERE (5/11)
MEDIA AD SALES EXECUTIVE
Develop new business. While training will be involved, this person must have an interest in web, social media, and email marketing sales and some relevant experience. This person will focus on selling across all of our media property digital channels. The pay for this position is a base salary, plus commission/bonuses/spiffs. Full info HERE (5/11)
DIGITAL AD SALES ASSOCIATE
Prospect, contact and close new advertisers for our digital and print publications. Working directly with clients to develop and nurture relationships to understand their advertising needs. Create proposals based on needs of clients to fulfill digital and print advertising needs. 1-2 years of sales experience preferred. Full info HERE (5/11)
EMAIL MARKETING MANAGER
Responsible for planning and developing our overall email marketing strategy. Managing the strategy, ensuring the health of our email lists & focus on building a robust email marketing universe. Work w/Mailchimp in collaboration with the Web Development, Digital Ad Ops & Sales teams. Exp w/email marketing, lead nurturing, and/or web analytics req. Full info HERE (5/11)
MANAGER, RESEARCH ANALYTICS
Responsible for HQ research reporting outputs and analytics across Paramount International linear and non-linear platforms and provide partners with regular analytics, data-led insights, and business expertise. Manage and support all levels of the data flow from source through to report production. Min of 3 yrs. exp in providing research analytics. Full info HERE (5/10)
PRODUCTION HR & STAFFING MANAGER >>
TOP NY PRODUCTION COMPANY/NYC: Being the employee contact for HR, creating a recruitment plan, and maintaining production health care benefits as well as other tasks. Act as a consultant to managers and staff regarding policies and procedures. A bachelor’s degree and 4+ yrs experience in human resources at a senior-level in the entertainment production industry are required. Full info HERE (5/10)
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CONSULTANT
Identifies and calls on new prospects using multiple sources of sales leads to interest them in benefits of advertising with Cox Media. Meets with prospective to assess their advertising needs. Builds an effective consultative relationship with clients, advertisers, and the agencies that represent them. 2 yrs of exp. in Media Sales environment. Full info HERE (5/10)
DIGITAL MARKETING ANALYST
BATON ROUGE, LA
Provide weekly pacing reports & updates to the digital team and sellers. Execute analysis of campaign strategy, assessment of creative results, & determine actionable results based on data. Deliver white glove service to top tier clients & oversee, monitor pacing reports & provide recaps on a weekly & monthly basis. 2 or more yrs of exp req. Full info HERE (5/10)
ADVERTISING SALES ASSOCIATE
BATON ROUGE, LA
Build/maintain great relationships with customers. Develop advertising campaigns to achieve our client’s marketing goals. create customized presentations and proposals and participate in sales pitches. Develop relationships by repping Cox at local business networking and charity events. 1+ year of experience in related field. Full info HERE (5/10)
MEDIA SALES COORDINATOR >>
IMPULSE MEDIA SALES/NY: Assist with activities between sales staff and station and agency clients by performing the following duties: Preparing avails, proposals, processing sales orders; corresponding with station traffic department contacts, negotiating make goods with agency buying teams. Full info HERE (5/9)
MEDIA SALES PLANNER >>
FUSE MEDIA/NY: Develop customized plans and presentations for Ad Sales clients. This is a great opportunity for someone looking to join a fast-growing business with future growth opportunities. Full info HERE (5/9)
SR. DIRECTOR, DIGITAL MEDIA >>
THE YES NETWORK/STAMFORD: This position is responsible for overseeing the content across all of YES Network’s digital platforms, including YESNetwork.com, social platforms, YouTube, and the YES App. Full info HERE (5/9)
SALES ASSISTANT – NATIONAL
Provides full support and manages day-to-day maintenance of all accounts for the Ad Sales team by performing the following duties. Full info HERE (5/8)
Develops media proposals and works directly with Account Executives and Pricing & Planning. Full info HERE (5/8)
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER >>
LAUNDRY SERVICE – AMAZON PRIME VIDEO ACCOUNT/LA: Developing and posting content for Amazon Prime Video social, communicating with internal teams and clients. Craft original posts, create assets and capitalize on trending moments. Full info HERE (5/7)
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER >>
LAUNDRY SERVICE – AMAZON MUSIC ACCOUNT (REGIONAL MEXICANO)/LA OR REMOTE: Social Media Manager for one of our music and streaming clients, with a focus on Regional Mexicano communities. Must be fluent in both spoken and written Spanish. Develope and post content for social channels. Full info HERE (5/7)
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER >>
LAUNDRY SERVICE – AMAZON MUSIC (PODCASTS)/LA OR REMOTE: Craft original posts and engaging with podcast listeners, creating assets to capitalize on trending moments in culture, and ideating innovative approaches that’ll make your content shine. Full info HERE (5/7)
MARKETING DIRECTOR >>
ENTERTAINMENT & MEDIA SEARCH/CHARLOTTE: Responsible for website and digital content initiatives. The Director of Distribution Marketing is responsible for all affiliate/distribution marketing activity. Full info HERE (5/6)
PAID MEDIA MANAGER
Day-to-day mgt, optimization, & scalability of existing, paid, customer-acquisition channels, as well as the discovery & implementation of new channels. Exp w/ Facebook advertising, SEM, programmatic display & direct media buys. Full info HERE (5/6)