Esports Masterclass

Everybody wants a piece of the esports pie – but it’s still an unknown flavour for many

July 4, 2017

To say iSportconnect’s inaugural Esports Masterclass was packed would be an understatement, writes Esports Insider Editor Sam Cooke.

The attendance of those from across the worlds of sports and business, plus some from esports itself, highlighted perfectly the intense level of intrigue and interest in esports right now.

In essence, everybody wants a piece of the pie, but it’s a flavour they’ve not come across before.

From football clubs to the WTA, UFC, cricket associations, Groupon and more – the level of knowledge within the crowd of exactly what esports is varied widely at the start of the day.

By the end, it’s safe to say, a good number left enlightened.

The speaker line-up at the event hosted at Lewis Silkins’ London offices included ESIC Commissioner Ian Smith, Formula E Esports Manager Matt Huxley, ESL’s Senior Product Manager Rob Black, Adam Simmons of Level Up Media, Tom Halls from Gfinity, Esports Insider’s own Ollie Ring and more.

Everything from communities, brands moving into the space, the need for regulation, predictions for the next five years and more was discussed and dissected. Amidst the five year predictions were that we will have a brand new top tier esports title and that there will be a major integrity incident which will catch the industry at large by surprise.

As to our own Ollie Ring’s predictions, he stated that he believes “one of the big three esports titles will not be considered top tier within five years time”.

A valuable point was also made in the afternoon regarding the need for media training for players and those officially involved with teams. It was also agreed upon that more needs to be done around career development, and the opportunities post-typically-exceptionally-early retirement of professional players.

The work that ESL is now doing with the University of York in regards to education, opportunities and research is a great start and we need this kind of initiative implemented at a much wider level.

Events such as these certainly help in terms of providing a basic level of education and awareness, plus connecting those within the esports industry to interested parties outside of it.

Our own Esports Insider Forum Series events begin later this month on July 20th at Fnatic’s Bunkr. These will have a similar premise with one discussion panel but more of a focus around casual networking, food, drinks and a tournament to round off the evening.

The first expert discussion panel will be on why football clubs are moving into the space, and the opportunity here. Fnatic will also discuss their current arrangement with AS Roma.

Early bird tickets have sold out but tickets do remain (at £15 excluding VAT); you can find out more about the event and secure your tickets here.

Esports Masterclass