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Team Oceania Wins First Olympic Esports Week Exhibition Event in Singapore

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Team Oceania took the tape at the Olympic Esports Week duathlon event on Sunday, where the Arena Games made its Exhibition Event debut in duathlon format. Twenty athletes and five teams competed in the relay event, each completing a 750m run, 6km bike and another 750m run, where the times from the first three legs dictated the pursuit start times of the final leg.

Team Oceania were able to build up what proved to be an unassailable lead as Jack Latham, Lucy Evans and Coen Anderson gave Hannah Pollock the perfect set up to go on and see them home for gold, Europe home for silver, North America the bronze.

“That was very, very hard. I loved every single second of it even though the pain was excruciating, I just needed to push through and dig deep mentally, so fun to be on the world stage here in Singapore and I’m so glad to get the win here with all the guys,” Latham said.

Latham got Oceania off to a flying start on the opening run and despite struggling to get into his shoes on the bike, he stretched the lead up to 10 seconds over Lorenzo Pelliciardi in second, Team Asia in third 25 seconds back.

A brilliant transition from Pelliciardi saw him briefly back in check with the leader before Latham opened things up again and put in a full 25 seconds into the Italian to put Team Oceania into a great position after the first round.

Lucy Evans took up the task for Oceania, but it was Ruth Pardy for USA onto the watts quickest and pushing the bike segment hard. Ziqing Lu was chasing hard in second for Team Asia but the gap was over 20 seconds to her and Evans heading onto the last 750m run.

Marton Kropko was looking to get Team Europe right back into the mix in the third leg but he couldn’t shake off Oceania’s Coen Anderson, Mexico’s Darell Zuniga chasing hard in third. The Hungarian finally found daylight out front and by the end of the final run had taken 10 seconds out of Oceania’s advantage heading to the pursuit start finale.

Oceania had a 26-second advantage into the final round over Europe, North America just over a minute, Asia 1 and Asia 2 adrift by 3 minutes and 5 minutes respectively.

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eSports

OG Esports Partners with PARI

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OG Esports has partnered with esports betting brand PARI in a deal which aims to enhance the customer experience.

OG Esports, also known as OG, is a professional esports organisation based in Europe. The new collaboration has promised to bring exclusive content, exciting events, as well as unique opportunities.

Sujoy Roy, Head of Partnerships at OG Esports, said: “Partnering with PARI is an incredible opportunity. Their forward-thinking approach matches our vision of delivering unparalleled experiences to our fans. We’re excited to bring fresh and exciting opportunities to the esports scene.”

Sergey Glamazda, CEO of PARI Esports, said: “We are thrilled to partner with OG, the legendary international team and two-time winner of The International! OG consistently surprises and performs at a high level across all esports titles. It is a great honor to collaborate with an organization led by Ceb and N0tail!”

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eSports

First-ever Olympic Esports Games to take place in 2025; massive opportunity for Indian esports

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Following the IOC’s partnership with the NOC of Saudi Arabia to host the inaugural Olympic Esports Games, India’s growing esports sector has an opportunity to prove its mettle on the international stage and flourish

In a historic move, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced that the inaugural Olympic Esports Games will take place in Saudi Arabia in 2025. This decision follows the recent proposal by the IOC’s Executive Board and will be presented at the IOC Session ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

The IOC has entered a 12-year partnership with the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Saudi Arabia to host the Olympic Esports Games. As per the official announcement, HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal, Minister of Sport and President of the Saudi Arabian Olympic and Paralympic Committee remarked, “The world is invited to join us in 2025 and celebrate this moment together.”

Indian esports, already on the rise, stands to gain significantly from this development. Following a bronze medal win in DOTA 2 at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and competing in five titles at the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, India’s esports scene is on track for further growth.

Expressing his enthusiasm for the groundbreaking development, Akshat Rathee, Co-founder and MD of NODWIN Gaming, said, “NODWIN Gaming is thrilled that esports has earned its place in the Olympics with its own standalone event, akin to the Summer, Winter, and Paralympics. This recognition allows countries to develop independent esports programs. Together with our partners in the GEF and the EWC, NODWIN Gaming is eager to build esports in our core growth markets, seizing this opportunity for hope and glory.”

The IOC launched its first esports pilot, the Olympic Virtual Series, in 2021 followed by the Olympic Esports Week in Singapore in June 2023. This event brought together over 130 players from around the world, competing in 10 mixed-gender categories, attracting over 500,000 unique participants and six million views, with 75% of the audience aged 13 to 34.

“The IOC’s embrace of the Olympic Esports Games honors the dedication and skill of millions of gamers worldwide. It goes beyond just competition; it elevates esports to a global platform, encouraging international collaboration and potentially ushering in a new generation of athletes. This initiative truly is a landmark moment for esports, bringing it the global recognition it has long earned. The inclusion of esports in the Olympic movement demonstrates its growing influence and cements its place in the future of sports,” commented Roby John, CEO and Co-founder at SuperGaming.

The introduction of the Olympic Esports Games is set to further enhance the credibility of esports in India, establishing it as a viable sport and career option.

“This recognition will further legitimize esports as a career option, more parents will now support their children in pursuing careers in this field, elevating the professional landscape of competitive gaming. We are proud to support the growth of esports in India, giving our players the chance to shine on this prestigious international platform,” further.

With the official announcement of the Olympic Esports Games, work will now begin on selecting the host city and venue, determining the event’s timing, selecting titles, and establishing the qualification process for players. The IOC has emphasized collaboration with International Federations already engaged in e-sports and National Olympic Committees that include esports in their activities.

While the titles for the Olympic Esports Games have not been officially announced, the potential inclusion of games across diverse platforms is expected to stimulate growth in India’s gaming industry. This could lead to a rise in PC and console gaming, diversifying India’s predominantly mobile gaming market as players aim to represent their nation at the largest international multi-sport event.

“We are absolutely elated by the announcement of the Olympic Esports Games which is being hosted in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This marks a monumental step for the industry and all its stakeholders. The Indian esports sector is on an upward trajectory and this will further empower it. Esports being integrated under the banner of the pinnacle of sports events in the world will bring further legitimacy to this form of sport and encourage a new generation of esports talent to rise from the country. We’re excited and look forward to extending our support to the esports community of India so they make a mark at the global event!” said Vishal Parekh, COO, CyberPowerPC India.

Additionally, the IOC will establish a dedicated structure for the Olympic Esports Games, distinct from the traditional Olympic Games model, to address the unique aspects of esports financing and organization.

 

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AFK Gaming announces India’s first-ever premium insights dashboard for esports analytics

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In a bid to provide authentic data and unparalleled insights into the nation’s esports industry, AFK Gaming has announced the beta launch of ‘AFK Gaming Insights’, India’s first-ever premium analytics dashboard.

This first-of-its-kind powerful tool offers real-time data and analytics to help users, brands and other stakeholders make informed decisions and stay ahead in the esports landscape of the country.

AFK Gaming Insights features three core analytics modules:
Tournaments Analytics: Access detailed information on prize pools, sponsors, players, teams, and more. This module provides a comprehensive view of the financial and competitive aspects of esports tournaments, enabling users to strategize effectively.

User Analytics: Discover valuable insights into demographics, occupations, interests, income ranges, spending habits, and more. This data helps users understand the diverse backgrounds and behaviours of the Indian gaming community, facilitating targeted marketing and engagement efforts.
Social Analytics: Track key metrics such as Instagram followers, YouTube subscribers, and the country’s top live streamers.

Expressing his enthusiasm on the beta launch of AFK Gaming Insights, Nishant Patel, Co-founder and CEO of AFK Gaming stated, “AFK Gaming Insights is a product built to address a critical market need. In the absence of reliable data to aid their decision making, key stakeholders in the Indian gaming, esports and youth culture industries have been struggling to make informed decisions. With this launch, we hope to empower tournament organizers, brand managers, team owners and industry observers with a single source of truth that they can turn to for industry knowledge and information that will drive the sector’s growth as a whole.”

According to a report by Niko Partners, India is the fastest-growing gaming market, with over 450 million gamers and more than USD 830 million revenue generated in 2023. This expansive market requires a platform that enables stakeholders and brands to access insights on the go and use these metrics for their engagement and campaigns.

To address this, AFK Gaming Insights, which will be available exclusively to annual subscribers, has been devised to cater to a diverse spectrum of users. For newcomers, the dashboard serves as an entry point, providing information that helps them understand trends, player performances and tournament dynamics.

Gamers can optimise their strategies and refine their performances while hardcore audiences will benefit from the deeper insights on their favourite gamers and teams’ social media engagements, viewerships and tournament statistics. For example, the tool reveals that Total Gaming is currently the most viewed Indian gaming YouTuber, with an average of 4.25 million views per video over the last month.

On the other hand, industry stakeholders can leverage detailed analytics into market trends, audience behaviours and sponsorship opportunities to make strategic decisions. For instance, the dashboard uncovers significant trends, such as the fact that more Indian gamers spend money on a daily basis rather than not spending at all.

This pioneering platform promises to redefine the analysis of competitive gaming and change the way esports is perceived in the country.

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