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eSports team to emerge as an eSports empire – do not despise small beginnings

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Being backed up and fostered by some of the giant names among sports and money managers for entertainment family dynasties and Hollywood power brokers, the esports team which started small will promptly emerge as an esports empire.

The Vision Esports LP, esports conglomerate launched by Stratton Sclavos, Rick Fox, and Amit Raizada has just closed on a $38 million investment from a host of investors led by the Creative Artists Agency and TPG Growth joint venture Evolution Media.

Rick Hess, the Founder and Co-Managing partner of Evolution Media, in a statement said: “Evolution Media has spent several years advising and analysing companies in the esports sector, and we’re particularly excited to partner with a world-class management team led by Stratton, whom we’ve known since his days running Strikeforce and the San Jose Sharks. Esports is one of the highest growth sectors within all media and entertainment. We could not be more bullish on the space and Vision’s market position.”

NBA superstar Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman’s Durant Company also joined to back up Vision Esports along with Shamrock Holdings — the personal investment vehicle for the Walt Disney family; the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team; and New York Giants star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

The company’s roots stem from a now-apocryphal trip that Fox, an NBA all-star, and actor, took with his son to see an esports game at Madison Square Garden. Fox came away from the game with a respect for competitive gaming and a thirst to get on the ground floor of something he thought could be the next big thing.

With the help of Raizada, the two formed EchoFox and began recruiting a roster of players across a slate of different game titles.

Sclavos, the Former Chief Executive of tech company Verisign and the San Jose Sharks, wanted to come down to Los Angeles to start an investment fund. At a dinner with Fox and Raizada, he was recruited into the esports world and launched Vision Esports.

“You can’t deny the numbers,” Sclavos says. “It’s like the internet was way back in 95 and 96.”

And as the three men looked at what was going on within the burgeoning business of esports they saw opportunities to not to just own a team, but also own a league and create their own narrative franchise around the games, the teams, and their league. That is where the new capital comes in.

Through the new investment, money Vision Esports will take a majority position in the EchoFox franchise that was Fox’s brainchild and launched the group’s journey to the centre of the esports earth. The conglomerate is also going to include Twin Galaxies, which began in 1981 as the ultimate source for video game world records, stats, and player analytics and is now creating in esports leagues in conjunction with game publishers. Finally, the group used some cash to take a majority position in Vision Entertainment, which produces esports related stories and live streams for esports events.

Now all of the various esports properties will sit under one roof and the team at Vision Esports can work on rolling out their first league, a battle royale-based competition the Twin Galaxies’ H1Z1 Pro League which will begin its inaugural season in April 2018.

“This is just like pro sports,” says Scalvos. “Why wouldn’t you want to invest broadly across the spectrum so you have participation in the team side, participation in the league and the content? And we said, let’s be in all three parts of the ecosystem.”

The economics speaks for itself. According to Scalvos, leagues are wildly more profitable than teams. “Teams are great but leagues make 27 times the revenue,” he said.

The approach that Vision Esports is taking to building their league (around the wildly popular battle royale format) alongside game publisher Daybreak Games is a new model.

Activision/Blizzard and Riot chose not to partner with anyone for their competitive gaming leagues. Meanwhile, competitive gaming has existed outside of the control of game publishers for several years with Valve selling licenses to run tournaments worldwide, according to Scalvos.

While much of the capital went to investments, Vision Esports also built out its team. Adding Chris Nordling, a former Executive at MGM Resorts; Mike Mossholder who worked for the UFC; and Jace Hall who was with Warner Brothers Interactive.

“It took a while to get here but this esports thing is here,” said Scalvos.

Source: techcrunch.com

Niji Narayan has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. He reports gaming industry headlines from all around the globe.

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WinZO Announces $1.5 Million Fund to Support Game Developers

Niji Narayan

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WinZO Announces $1.5 Million Fund to Support Game Developers
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The e-sports gaming platform WinZO has announced a $1.5 million fund to support game developers and acquire content for the platform.

“Through this fund, we are looking to partner with Gaming Studios as well as independent game developers by offering them an infrastructure to develop top quality content and a powerful platform to monetize their games from day one. A sector gets disrupted when the best brains of the world work actively towards unlocking its potential. Through this initiative, we look forward to interacting with highly enthusiastic and top-notch talent, keen at creating a dent in the global gaming ecosystem,” Paavan Nanda, Co-founder, WinZO said.

WinZO, which is backed by Kaalari Capital, offers more than 25 games on its app-based platform in ten languages. It aims to develop real-time multi-player mobile gaming experience that is social, inclusive and accessible for the first-time smartphone users in Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets.

WinZO would use the funds, set aside to develop localised content for the platform in partnership with cherry-picked game developers in India and around the world.

“WinZO’s social multi-player skill gaming platform clocked 100 million gaming minutes every day and has been able to successfully monetize this engagement. The company is growing 50 per cent month on month. On one hand, large OTTs platforms are struggling to monetize in India, but WinZO is facilitating the first-ever M&E transactions from the tier 2 or tier 3 audiences,” Paavan Nanda added.

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eSports and Gaming Platform Zengaming Signs with AU10TIX for 2nd Generation ID Authentication & Onboarding Automation

George Miller

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eSports and Gaming Platform Zengaming Signs with AU10TIX for 2nd Generation ID Authentication & Onboarding Automation
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AU10TIX will power eSports and gaming Social Network, Zengaming (Zen Gaming) with automated forensic-level forgery, counterfeiting and collateral risk detection in customer-submitted ID document images, as well as retrieving ID document content required for KYC.

Zengaming has chosen AU10TIX following comparative testing against other solutions, where AU10TIX 2nd generation technology has detected image manipulations that other systems failed to detect. AU10TIX technology is already used by major brands in a broad range of markets and geographies also thanks to a proven superior ability to handle borderline quality images, hence increasing customer conversion rates. AU10TIX solution portfolio includes all essential building blocks of customer onboarding in KYC regulated markets. These include the handling of ID documents, biometric Selfie-to-ID face matching with advanced anti-spoofing Liveness detection, identity data verification and PEP/Sanction screening, etc. AU10TIX also offers clients SDKs that can improve the capturing of ID documents and faces at a level suitable for forensic-level authentication.

“We chose AU10TIX technology first and foremost based on its superior ability to detect sophisticated fraud that others failed to detect,” says Jimi Gecelter, CEO of Zengaming: “The gaming industry is continuously threatened by sophisticated fraud attempts, which is why we put effective fraud protection at the top of our priorities. When put to the test, AU10TIX 2nd generation technology has proven clear superiority, detecting more fraud and converting customer submitted images to workable onboarding records. We are now able to offer our customers with the strongest fraud protection, while making onboarding much faster and simpler.”

“We are happy to welcome Zengaming to our growing family of clients,” says Ron Atzmon, Managing Director of AU10TIX: “We are also happy to have proven yet again better than any other solution in a challenging head to head shootout. AU10TIX BOS is deployment-ready for eSports and gaming, already demonstrating its ability to combine better fraud protection and regulatory compliance, while improving operating efficiency, saving costs, and streamlining customer experience.”

“Gaming, eSports and related markets are seeing ever increasing threat from fraudsters. At the time, regulatory demands increase, and operating efficiency becomes a competitive edge,” says Ofer Friedman, VP Marketing of AU10TIX: “This is a technology designed for the new types of fraud Gaming sees. Especially genuine-stolen-Personal-Data based Photoshop-ed counterfeits that can pass conventional ID “Verification” solutions, let along back office examination. AU10TIX 2nd generation technology whose roots are in solutions for airport security and border control, has been designed from the onset for deeper fraud protection. It goes forensic, it is 100% automatically, and at it does so with response times similar to what standard solutions take to extract data and run logical-only checks. Actually, Zengaming is now powered with the same technology that powers the best equipped global players.”

 

About Zengaming:

Zengaming is a gaming company founded in 2015, set out to create products that will bring value to eSports enthusiasts and gamers worldwide. Zengaming’s most recent product Lootbear.com is a one of its kind virtual item marketplace that enables users to rent virtual items from each other for a fixed monthly price. This innovative idea makes virtual items accessible for everyone, gamers no longer need to spend hundreds of dollars on in game items, now they can rent them for just a fraction of the price. The product was released last year and already has over 10M hours of rented items and hundreds of thousands of users. Lootbear is the fastest growing marketplace in gaming and the only that offers rental service.

 

About AU10TIX:

AU10TIX Limited, a fully owned subsidiary of ICTS International N.V, deals with the authentication and digitization of identifying documents including Passports, identity cards, driving licenses and other complementary identifying documents. The company specializes in implementing hardware & software based applications used for scanning, identifying, content retrieval, authentication and validation of identifying documents. AU10TIX is a pioneer of all-channel (front-end and online) ID authentication and processing solutions. The company’s products drastically reduce identifying document-based fraud, reducing the costs associated with client processing and enabling effective regulatory compliance, while making the sales and support operations speedier and considerably more efficient.

For more information, visit www.au10tix.com

 

Source: AU10TIX

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eSports

SNICKERS and NBA 2K League Announce Partnership

George Miller

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SNICKERS and NBA 2K League Announce Partnership
Reading Time: 1 minute

 

Who’s hungry?

NBA 2K League’s new partner SNICKERS has got you covered!

The NBA 2K League and SNICKERS® have announced a partnership that makes Snickers the Official Chocolate Bar of the NBA 2K League. Beginning from last Friday on the NBA 2K League’s live Twitch and YouTube broadcast and social media channels, the NBA 2K League will pick the SNICKERS® “Hungriest Player to Watch” – the player who has the most on the line that night and the most to prove. This activation will take place each game night for the rest of the 2019 season, including the 2019 NBA 2K League Playoffs and Finals, which tip off Wednesday, July 24.

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