Good morning! It’s Thursday and this is your early morning Esports and gaming brief.
Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse impacted several major game developers
, though esports organizations remained largely unscathed by the second-largest bank failure in U.S. history.
The financial and venture capital news of the week – SVB folding in 48 hours following a bank run that left an institution that once held more than $210 billion in assets in ruins – was bound to affect the games industry, as many developers and some esports organizations rely on venture capital as a means of maintaining operations.
Some heavy hitters in gaming were affected, including Unity Software, a widely used software platform for creating games, and Roblox Corporation, the creators of one of the biggest games in the world. Each said in separate statements that 5% of their cash and cash equivalents were in SVB. Meanwhile, James Fudge of The Esports Advocate confirmed most Tier 1 esports organizations would not be affected by the bank run, with the exception of NRG Esports and Gen.G Esports.
FIFAe, the competitive esports program for FIFA, has launched FAMERHERGAME, an initiative to help promote competition opportunities for women in FIFA esports. FIFAe oversees all regional programs for FIFA esports, and it plans to “empower Member Associations and regional leagues like the ECL and other league partners to run their own events to increase women participation globally.” FIFAe also plans to host a bootcamp to help highlight top women in esports, build their skills and give them a chance to compete for an all-inclusive trip to this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Complexity Gaming will host a VALORANT Legends tournament for women and non-binary players with a $10,000 prize pool on the line. The Paradox Invitational, the first event in an upcoming series of Complexity-supported competitions focused on elevating women and non-binary competitors, will feature VALORANT Game Changers teams and help recognize Women’s History Month. Complexity’s female-identifying and non-binary roster, GX3, will compete in the event March 25-26 alongside Akave Girls, CLG Red, Evil Geniuses, Hamboigas, KARMA, Leviatan, and Velaris.
Competitive Fortnite will return to LAN with a $250,000 prize pool at DreamHack San Diego, parent company ESL FACEIT Group announced. The DreamHack Open Featuring Fortnite will feature $30,000 going to the top-performing players in its Zero Build duos competition. The event will take place April 7-9 at the San Diego Convention Center.
Gamers8, a Saudi Arabian esports tournament, will host a $15 million Dota 2 tournament at its Riyadh Masters in the country’s capital city this July. Players will qualify for the Gamers8 tournament via ESL FACEIT Group’s ESL Pro Tour for Dota 2, which begins April 9 with DreamLeague Season 19. EFG, which is owned by Saudi commercial investment entity Savvy Games Group, will send three teams to Masters alongside 17 others for the two-week event in July. Riyadh Masters will likely be the premier esports event of 2023, with more than $45 million in cumulative prizing being distributed across multiple tournaments.
TOP APPAREL BRANDS IN TWITCH CHAT- FEB 2023
Looking to Twitch chat is a great way to measure the popularity of a brand among the 18 to 35-year-old demographic
The most mentioned apparel brand in February is Gucci. During February Gucci garnered over 116K chat mentions on Twitch owning 1/5th of the total mentions for all apparel brands on Twitch.
As Twitch begins to diversify their creators and influencers who broadcast on the platform, we have begun to see new audiences become a part of the Twitch community. Many influencers Influencers who have come onto Twitch are selling a luxury lifestyle where they drive nice cars, live in expensive houses, and have nice jewelry. This is a great audience for Gucci who is a luxury apparel brand based in Italy.
Read more about the top apparel brands on our blog
| SPONSORSHIP & ACTIVATION
Complexity Gaming has partnered with social media sports platform Playmaker to “link traditional sports and gaming through content collaboration and strategic development with athletes and gamers.” Complexity, which sponsors an athlete-focused content creator program known as Complexity Stars, will assist Playmaker in the launch of esports and gaming channel playmakerOP and facilitate access to Complexity parent company GameSquare’s resources and talent to build Playmaker’s audience of 18 million followers across various social platforms.
The Portuguese Football Federation is building out an esports visibility program for soccer simulation titles, according to a report from Esports Insider. The initiative will focus on building awareness of esports at universities in the country through an event circuit featuring eFootball and FIFA titles. The move could benefit Portugal’s efforts in esports at a pro level as well: The Primeira Liga, the country’s top soccer league, also sponsors an esports competition known as eLiga.
Sports marketing agency SPORTFIVE has partnered with Giants Software to help secure sponsorships for the Spanish esports organization. SPORTFIVE has worked in the esports space before through a similar partnership with Brazilian org paiN Gaming and will leverage that experience to help Giants find a naming sponsor, facility sponsor and overall primary sponsor.
ESL events will continue to be broadcast on German TV following an extension of ESL FACEIT Group’s partnership with SPORT1. SPORT1 will continue to air competitions in the ESL Pro League, Intel Extreme Masters, ESL One and several other circuits on its esports-focused affiliate station, the organizations announced.
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YOUGOV LIVING DATA INSIGHTS
What do esports followers do on social media?
For brands looking to connect with esports followers on social media, it is important to know the types of content they consume on it. Our data shows that other than gaming and hobbies (55%), esports followers are also very likely to engage with content centred on comedy (57%), music (51%), TV & movies (51%), technology (51%) and even business and money (43%).
Misfits Gaming has signed AustinShow and Karl Jacobs as the company continues to expand its footprint in the content space. Both content creators have roles that go beyond the usual for signed streamers: AustinShow was also brought on as Misfits’ executive producer, while Jacobs now holds a co-ownership position in the organization and was named creative director for Misfits. “This basically means Misfits is gonna power a lot of the ideas and concepts both me and Austin have wanted to do for a while now,” Jacobs said on Twitter. “Love working with him on everything and anything and I can’t wait for you guys to see what all we have planned.”
Sentinels has signed VALORANT pro Jimmy “Marved” Nguyen as a replacement for substitute player ??Hunter “SicK” Mimsin, who was arrested in Texas on March 2 on charges of criminal trespassing. Marved, a former OpTic Gaming player, will take SicK’s place as a backup following SicK’s suspension by Sentinels on March 6. “Our goal is to support Hunter during this difficult moment,” Sentinels CEO Rob Moore said on Twitter on March 8. “However, due to the upcoming start of the franchise league, we will be looking to sign a 6th man that is able to take up the spot he’s left vacant for the time being. I appreciate the community’s patience as we get through this together.”
Esports organization Cloud9 has made cuts to its staff, with at least four people affected by layoffs, according to a report from The Esports Advocate. This staff reduction adds to an already robust list of esports teams that have cut programs, personnel or both throughout 2023 as capital concerns grip the industry. Organizations like The Guard have made headlines for cutting almost all of their staff, while other prominent names like 100 Thieves and FaZe Clan have trimmed dozens of positions thus far in 2023.
Retired League of Legends pro Darshan “Darshan” Upadhyaya will return to pro play as a top laner for 100 Thieves’ North American Challengers League team while former top laner Rayan “Sniper” Shoura takes a break from competitive play. Darshan, 28, last competed professionally for Cloud9’s Academy roster in late 2022. The veteran has experience on the Tier 1 stage as well as a mainstay on Counter Logic Gaming’s roster, where he competed from the Spring Split in 2015 to the end of the 2019 Spring Split.
Former Blizzard game design gurus Jay Wilson and Julian Love have launched a new studio, Gas Giant Games, with former THQ senior vice president of business development Dan Kelly as a co-founder. Wilson, the former game director of Diablo III and lead designer for World of Warcraft: Legion, will be Gas Giant’s design director, while Love, the principal combat designer for Diablo IV and lead technical artist for Diablo III, will be the creative director for the studio. Kelly, whose former studio created titles such as Saints Row, Destroy All Humans! and Darksiders, will serve as the chairman of Gas Giant Games. Given their experiences, it’s no surprise Gas Giant will pursue an action role-playing game, with a first look available for publishers and potential investors at the Game Developers Conference from March 20-24.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has finalized its penalty for Epic Games; the Fortnite creator will be required to pay $245 million to players for allegedly using dark patterns and allowing children to make in-game purchases without any restrictions. The FTC settled with Epic following claims in December that the company used “a variety of design tricks” that led to unintended purchases by consumers. The $245 million will go toward refunds for customers, and the FTC also ordered Epic to be more transparent in marketing its microtransactions and not block consumers from accessing their accounts while disputing charges.
Overwatch Vice President and Commercial Leader Jon Spector is leaving Activision-Blizzard, the former Overwatch League head announced. Spector, who joined the company in 2017 prior to the Overwatch League’s launch and was at the helm for the league in 2020, plans to vacate his role in March. “Working on Overwatch has been the highlight of my career,” Spector said on Twitter. “There are so many exciting things coming to Overwatch that I can’t wait to see as a player. I’ve worked closely with the rest of the leadership team on this transition, and I know the franchise is in great hands.”
Sports Illustrated parent company Arena Group and Gaud-Hammer Gaming Group have revealed Esports Illustrated, a new esports and gaming publication. Esports Illustrated is currently focusing its coverage on Apex Legends, Call of Duty, League of Legends and VALORANT, and Sports Illustrated hopes to use the vertical to dive into digital competition and “expand its reach,” said Chris Pirrone, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Sports Illustrated.
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Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
What is the nickname for the NCAA basketball tournament taking place this month? Answer: March Madness. Kudos: David Westberg | SAG•AFTRA Federal Credit Union, Burbank, California; Michael Goodman | Radio One Atlanta, Atlanta; Matt Deprey | C-SPAN, Washington, D.C.; Tom Moore | Kalt Productions, Los Angeles; Creed Heilskov | ImOn Communications, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Barb Throm | Stealth Media, St. Louis, Missouri; Lorrie Shilling, El Segundo, California
|DIRECTOR OF SALES >>
NEXSTAR MEDIA GROUP WKRN -TV (ABC)/NASHVILLE TN: Being a Leader of the Sales Team and owning the position. Driving new business development. Managing inventory, rates, political sales processes & revenue forecasting. Developing and executing sales packages and projects to increase stations’ revenue. Performing other duties as assigned. Minimum five yrs experience in Television Station Management. Full info HERE
MANAGER, RIGHTS CLEARANCES, STANDARDS & PRACTICES
SILVER SPRING MD, Hybrid, Remote
Pre-screen broadcast programs, commercials and other content to ensure compliance with TV One’s current Content Standards, Federal Trade Commission/Federal Communications Commission regulations. Assign parental ratings to all TV One programming based on content review. 3+ yrs exp. in a rights clearances and standards and practices is preferred. Full info HERE
DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT, UNSCRIPTED >>
LIGHTHEARTED ENTERTAINMENT/NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Hybrid, Remote: Responsible for overseeing the development of unscripted programming from concept to delivery. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of identifying, developing, pitching and producing successful unscripted projects across a range of genres and networks. 5+ years of experience in unscripted television development. Full info HERE
AD SALES MARKETING MANAGER >>
REELZ, NYC: Drive advertiser revenue growth on a TOP 25 network. Develop sales materials, presentations, one-sheets. Manage B2B marketing projects & execute sponsorships. Strong deck-writing abilities, positive attitude, self-motivated, collaborative, creative, superior communication skills with a keen eye for detail. 5+ yrs in Sales Marketing preferred. Full info HERE
DIRECTOR, AD SALES RESEARCH
Collect, analyze, & interpret audience data (Nielsen, MRI, iSpot, etc.) for recurring sales reports & ad hoc requests. Synthesize large data sets from multiple sources into compelling & strategic insights for our Linear, CTV, and Distribution sales teams to drive revenue. 10+ yrs of exp. in a TV research role, including managing & leading staff. Full info HERE
RESEARCH ANALYST >>
REELZ, NYC: 2+ years exp generating & analyzing competitive viewing & advertiser information. Support sales, programming, marketing and finance. Working knowledge of NPower, StarMedia, iSpot TV and MRI. Expertise in Excel & PowerPoint. Full info HERE
DIRECTOR OF AD SALES – PLATFORM PARTNER
BBC GLOBAL DIGITAL NEWS & STREAMING
BBC Global Digital News & Streaming is looking for a highly skilled, NY based, Director of Ad Sales – Platform Partner. The purpose of the role is to launch BBC Studios Youtube and social advertising proposition across the Americas, deliver advertising revenues across the BBC Studios global portfolio and build a best in market Partner Sales team. Full info HERE
LOG EDITOR, COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS
CHICAGO, IL, NEW YORK, NY – Hybrid, Remote
Prepare and update the daily assigned program log for TV One or Cleo TV. Manage the placement of key clients by using detailed instructions to ensure correct placement as ordered by the Advertising Sales team. Bachelor’s degree in a related field or 2+ years of experience in Broadcast Cable Log Operations. Full info HERE
SR. PROMO EDITOR
SILVER SPRING, Hybrid, Remote
Video editing, with primary responsibility in marketing and digital media. Work with creative marketing teams to complete their production assignments. Contribute creative ideas that will help elevate the brand. Organize, Manage and Archive Avid Media Projects and files. 10 years of video editing exp. including 5 years of promo editing exp. Full info HERE
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE – AD SALES >>
GREAT AMERICAN MEDIA/CHICAGO Remote: Strategically sells linear & digital properties to drive Ad Sales revenue. Works with agencies & clients to develop unique advertising solutions for their brands. Requires 5-10 years of sales experience with established agency & client relationships. Seeking a motivated, self-starter with strong negotiation, communication & presentation skills. Full info HERE
SALES PLANNER – AD SALES >>
GREAT AMERICAN MEDIA/NEW YORK, Hybrid/Remote: Works with Account Executives to service clients daily. Builds sales plans, maintains media schedules & handles client requests such as stewardship, liability, and traffic concerns. Seeking a motivated, self-starter with strong communication, problem-solving & time management skills. Must have 1+ year of planning experience. Full info HERE
MOTION GRAPHIC DESIGNER >>
LONG STORY SHORT MEDIA/WASHINGTON, DC: Bring creative concepts to life through design and animation. Motion Designer will work in a team environment to share fresh design perspectives and create engaging high-quality content for a variety of subjects and media. Full Info HERE
SALES MANAGER >>
NEXSTAR MEDIA GROUP/INDIANAPOLIS: Provides leadership for the broadcast/digital sales teams. Makes decisions regarding hiring, evaluation, promotion and operation of account executives and sales assistants. Develops and executes sales strategies that exceeds revenue targets in local, new business and digital revenue. Min 5 yrs of media sales exp; management exp. preferred. Full info HERE
SENIOR MANAGER, ACQUISITION AND OUTREACH >>
TELEVISION ACADEMY/LOS ANGELES, Hybrid: Develop, build, and execute member acquisition plans (monthly, quarterly, and annual) with measurable targets, optimize program performance and deliver strategic plans to achieve/exceed specific campaign KPIs. Identify and implement A/B tests & tactics, innovating & continually seeking to drive and improve. Min 4 yrs’ exp. in an acquisition role. Full info HERE
VICE PRESIDENT, MARKETING & ON-AIR PROMOTION >>
REELZ/ALBUQUERQUE, NM: Develop strategic approaches and tactical planning for on-air promotion, guiding the creative process from creation through post-production, and managing the execution of consumer marketing programs for on-air promotion and off-air advertising. Responsible for full on-air presentation and format management. Min of 8-10 yrs exp. Full info HERE
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE – AD SALES >>
GREAT AMERICAN MEDIA/NYC, Hybrid, Remote: Strategically sells linear & digital properties to drive Ad Sales revenue. Works with agencies & clients to develop unique advertising solutions for their brands. Requires 3+ years of sales experience with established agency & client relationships. Seeking a motivated, self-starter with strong negotiation, communication & presentation skills. Full info HERE
SALES ASSISTANT – AD SALES >>
GREAT AMERICAN MEDIA/NYC, Hybrid, Remote: Provides workflow support to ensure effective campaign delivery for advertisers. Verifies order and schedule accuracy and entry. Monitors accounts while booking and maintaining inventory. Works closely with Account Executives and Sales Planners. Seeking a motivated, self-starter with strong communication, analytical & problem-solving skills. Full info HERE
MANAGER, COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS
CHICAGO, NYC, Hybrid, Remote
Supervise & train copy coordinators & log editors for accuracy & attention to detail of building a commercial log & reading agency instructions. Monitor employee performance & output; provide back-up for all desks including log editing, added value insertion & continued communication with marketing for all custom creations. Min of 3 yrs of exp. Full info HERE
TRAFFIC MANAGER >>
WHYY/Hybrid, PHILADELPHIA: Create monthly programming grids for 12.1 and 12.3. Update programming grids when schedule changes are made. Prepare daily logs & submit to Centralcast Joint Master Control. Work w/WHYY Traffic Specialist who creates programming grids for 12.2 and logs for 12.2 and 12.3. 3-5 yrs of management exp. & working with data or traffic systems. Full info HERE
LOCAL MULTIMEDIA SALES MANAGER >>
WALA FOX 10 TV/MOBILE AL: Build a steady stream of new business, constantly recruit to grow the sales team, developing client solutions with account executives using digital and television products. Generating a weekly forecast of revenue, regularly attend sales calls with account executives. Skilled negotiator and problem solver. Proven history of developing new business. Full info HERE
Remote, must be licensed in NY or CA
Negotiating and drafting development deals, shopping agreements, amendments, talent deals, above-the-line contracts, PSAs, production release templates, trade-out agreements, specialty releases and other necessary documents. Shaping corporate and production legal policies. 5-10 yrs of entertainment legal exp. working with a law firm or production. Full info HERE
SR. DIRECTOR, CONSUMER MARKETING
SILVER SPRING, Hybrid, Remote
Lead the Consumer Marketing media, promotion and marketing campaigns by prioritizing shows & campaigns across the brand, and support for each of those priorities. Work with internal research and marketing analytics team to gather and organize past performance and insights, construct goals and objectives, and develop target definitions. 7+ yrs exp. Full info HERE
Design and implement AI systems and features.
Oversee and implement optimization of levels and manage memory and frame rates.
Senior Technical Artist
You will mentor and review the work of other less experienced team members.
Lead Gameplay Designer
In this role you will get to own multiple backend systems providing critical features for our artists and designers.
Senior Backend Developer (Tools)
Analyzes software requirements to determine feasibility of designs, timelines and completion schedules for product releases.
Game Development Software Engineer
Las Vegas NV
Design and deploy enhanced process and technology solutions, supporting the operational requirements and/or strategic initiatives.
Senior Software Engineer (AWS/Python)
Designs and implements project/program coordination and tracking methodologies across several project efforts.
Technical Program Manager
Team Lead for Digital Card business in the development of and participation in Livestream events.
Digital Production Marketing Manager
You will be key contributor to helping us understand our user base, segments and associated data.
Recruit, mentor, and lead a small team that provides practical support to all Sega of America Production projects.
Director of Development Services
Work with staff writers to prepare and edit voice over script documents.
Senior Commentary Designer
San Diego CA
Actively participate in engineering efforts that help streamline studio user experiences and efficiency.
Information Security Engineer II
San Diego CA
Help consult and evaluate media plans on the various marketing beats for any upcoming releases and find insights.
Associate Manager, Media & Analytics
San Francisco CA
Use your background in application, network, and cloud security to act as subject matter expert in incident response.
Security Engineer, Detection & Response
San Francisco CA
Work with the Activities Platform team to maintain the SDK, APIs and platform services for Activities.
Senior Software Engineer – Activities Platform
San Francisco CA