Media deals include linear TV channels SportsMax, Nordic Entertainment Group and BOLT+ after increased viewership in 2020
Esports tournament BLAST Premier has extended its international broadcast reach with eight new media rights deals for the rest of the 2021 season.
TV channels SportsMax, Nordic Entertainment Group and BOLT+, among other new deals, will take the world’s leading Counter-Strike tournament series to a number of new regions around the world, including: Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Iceland, Canada, Kosovo, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India and the Caribbean.
The new rights partnerships will extend the esports media network’s portfolio of media rights to over 35 partners, meaning BLAST Premier will be shown in 18 different languages and across 157 territories.
The announcement highlights a period of growth for BLAST’s TV and online distribution footprint after a year of increased viewership for esports. Newszoo’s 2020 report estimated a year-on-year increase in the total esports audience by 11.7% to just short of 500 million people, while revenue from media rights and sponsorships ($822.4m) was expected to account for three-quarters of the total market.
Last season, BLAST Premier enjoyed increased viewership and more than 83 million hours of content watched across all seven of its Counter-Strike tournaments while posting the most watched CS:GO online match of all time during the Global Final.
Alexander Lewin, VP of Distribution and Programming for BLAST, said: “We are thrilled to see so many new partners join the BLAST network of leading TV and online channels. These deals will offer even more fans the opportunity to tune in to watch BLAST Premier from around the world, which is now accessible in over 150 territories and 18 languages. We expect to continue our path of expansion during an exciting period of viewership growth at BLAST Premier and in esports.”
BLAST Premier is a global Counter-Strike tournament series that unites all major events, offers opportunities to all regions across the globe and crowns the world champions of CS:GO. Up to 32 teams will take part in the seven BLAST Premier events this year with a combined prize pool of $2,475,000 on the line.
Results: 2023 Northern Cape Online Championships
Even with load shedding causing frustration among both athletes and officials alike, Mind Sports South Africa (MSSA) was able to still host a verys successful championship were all participants were able to compete and, most of all, have fun.
With the “competent” South African government stating that South Africa will have load shedding for the next two years, MSSA is already reviewing its policies in regard to load shedding and its online championships.
Load shedding has a huge impact on esports, and may end up causing online console and pc gaming to become elitist as only those who are substantially financially advantaged will be able to compete. It may also result in mobile esports becoming more popular.. A continuous and consistent electricity supply is vital to South Africa developing as a major esports nation.
Nevertheless, MSSA is more than happy with the results from the 2023 Northern Cape Championships.
There were no less than seven (7) provinces represented, and more importantly, there were more females participating since 2020. Of the 22 athletes who earned Provincial Colours, 7 of such athletes are females.
Special mention must be made of Karli Roodt (Middelburg Hoërskool) who is the first female champion in the esports title of Rocket League to earn Mpumalanga Provincial colours. Karli also qualifies for National Team Trials, and may very well end up in the National Squad and/or Protea Team.
The female esports team, VYBN Females, also had a good showing in the CSGO esports title. The team has now earned Provincial colours as well as qualifying for National Team Trials, and may very well end up in the National Squad and/or Protea Team. Of course, CSGO is just one of the six titles which MSSA has entered to contest at IESF’s 15th World Championships.
IESF’s 15th World Championships will be played to the following titles:
- Counter-Strike: GO (CSGO)
- Counter-Strike: GO (CSGO) – Female division
- DotA 2
- Mobile Legends, Bang Bang
- Tekken 7
The winners of the 2023 Northern Cape Online Championships are:
|Title||Name of player/team||Club||Colours awarded|
|Clash of Clans||Martin Venter||Hoër Volkskool Potchefstroom||North West|
|Clash Royale – Premier||John Kim||Middies||Mpumulanga|
|Clash Royale – Premier – Female||Leone Loftus||Masters of Mind Sports||Free State|
|Clash Royale||Tshwarelo Tshwane||Knights Mind Sports Club|
CS:GO – Premier
|Josh Chapman||Western Cape|
|Sebastian Montoya-Pelaez||Western Cape|
|Michael de Villiers||Western Cape|
|Josh Orelowitz||Western Cape|
CS:GO – Premier – Female
|Paula van Vuuren||Western Cape|
|Rialet van Jaarsveld||Gauteng|
|FIFA 23 – Premier||Antonie Botes||Hoër Volkskool Potchefstroom||North West|
PUBGM – Premier
|Sulaimaan Musthan||KwaZulu Natal|
|Richard Henry||Eastern Cape|
|Rocket League – Premier||Nick Matzopoulos||ZAG Academy||Western Cape|
|Rocket League – Premier – Female||Karli Roodt||Middies||Mumulanga|
|Rocket League – High Schools||Maree van der Merwe||Hoër Volkskool Potchefstroom|
|Tekken 7||Jonathan Brown||Team Playbell||Western Cape|
|Sportsmanship Award||Desiree Botha||Middies|
Guild Esports pro-player has $1 million MrBeast win verified
Guild Esports, a global teams organisation and lifestyle brand, has confirmed that Fortnite pro-player, Anas El-Abd (‘Anas’), has had his $1 million MrBeast Fortnite competition win verified by organisers Epic Games and Jimmy ‘MrBeast’ Donaldson – a YouTube personality with the fourth-biggest channel on YouTube and more than 125 million subscribers.
Anas’ victory in the ‘MrBeast’s Extreme Survival Challenge’, which took place on 17 December 2022, has cemented his position as one of the top Fortnite players competing globally at a professional level.
When Anas joined Guild in 2021, he brought with him experience of the European pro scene, having played Fortnite since 2017. Anas has qualified for the game’s flagship Fortnite Champion Series (FNCS) Finals 14 times over the space of four years and 13 seasons, with this latest MrBeast accolade adding to his already impressive track record.
The MrBeast tournament victory from Anas rounded off a highly successful year of competition for Guild Esports and its players in 2022, with notable wins across the RL EMEA Predator League 2022, Game Changers EMEA Series 3, Fortnite Champion Series, EA Sports FIFA 22 eChampions League and the MrBeast Challenge.
In 2023, Guild is one of the leading organisations remaining committed to Fortnite competitions, with previous Fortnite tournament victories including four FNCS titles, Gamers8 – No Build, and the recent MrBeast Extreme Survival Challenge. Guild’s current Fortnite duo Anas and Henrik Mclean (‘Hen’) are also trialling playing together. Hen brings three FNCS trophies to the partnership, while Anas has one of the most consistent and highest average placement positions.
Jasmine Skee, CEO of Guild Esports, commented: “Many congratulations to Anas, who has proven yet again that he is among the world’s best Fortnite players. We are delighted by his success, which underscores the exceptional talent within Guild’s teams. Winning tournaments, reaching ever-larger audiences and gaining new fans, supports our ongoing growth as a leading global esports organisation. We can’t wait to see how Anas and Hen get on this year collaborating further and playing as a duo for Guild.”
Anas El-Abd (‘Anas’), Fortnite player at Guild Esports, commented: “Winning the MrBeast Challenge is one of my best accomplishments since playing Fortnite. Moving forward I will be focusing on tournaments with myself and Hen. We are doing pretty well playing together now, we are both good players and were both looking for a duo, so it makes sense to try it out.”
The World’s Biggest Esports Stars Train at Kinguin’s Cutting-Edge Esports Performance Center in Warsaw – Summary of 2022
In 2022, 66 bootcamps and 20 special events were held at the Kinguin Esports Performance Center in Warsaw – the state-of-the-art esports training center for players and teams in Europe.
Kinguin EPC is where the best teams in the world train to prepare for tournaments across key esports titles including Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, Dota 2, FIFA, Rocket League, Fortnite, VALORANT and Rainbow Six: Siege.
2022 in numbers:
- Number of bootcamps: 66
- Number of events: 20
- Longest stays: Misfits Premier – 116 days, X7 – 88 days
- The largest bootcamp: Seven Goats – 25 people
- Guests who visited EPC the most: Anonymo (6 bootcamps), Imperial (5), NAVI Javelins (4)
2022 was a thrilling year at the Kinguin Esports Performance Center being used by leading teams including Tundra Esports players, who in the following months won The Dota 2 International and FaZe Clan – winners of Intel Extreme Masters Katowice 2022. The center was also visited by teams such as Imperial, Renegades, Team Falcons, MOUZ, AGO, OG, TYLOO, MIBR, NAVI, SKADE, Acend, Wisła Kraków, Anonymo, Excel, Exeed, TSM and Pasha Gaming Camp.
Paweł Książek, Head of Kinguin Esports Performance Center, said: “The Kinguin Esports Performance Center was created with the best teams in the world in mind and last year showed the importance of the EPC to esports players and teams. It is an honor to host some of the biggest esports teams and legends including the winners of the most prestigious tournaments.”
Since the start of the war in Ukraine, Kinguin has been actively helping people affected by the conflict. The Kinguin Esports Performance Center is open to all Ukrainian esports players and their families free of charge. To date, it has hosted almost 30 people, and its doors are still open to Ukrainian people in need of support.
Kinguin EPC hosted 20 industry events in 2022 including SkillFactor, a talent show where young esports players competed against each other in CS:GO, Deluxe Ski Jump 2 tournament powered by Rockstar Energy Drinks, Esports Skills Camp, modern gaming colonies and practical classes in esports for the University of Physical Culture and Tourism in Pruszków.
Other key events include Intel Overclocking Masters, journalistic competitions in spinning processors, as well as broadcasts from Kinguin Legends, the world’s first tournament featuring the biggest stars in the history of the CS:GO scene.
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