Gareth Bale has launched a new esports franchise, Ellevens Esports, which is set to make its debut at the FIFA eWorld Cup in February 2020.
In partnership with 38 Entertainment Group, founded by investor and entrepreneur Jonathan Kark and former professional footballer Larry Cohen, Ellevens has officially launched with a FIFA team featuring three professional players.
The franchise, meanwhile, is also inviting gamers around the world to take part in an open talent search with the aim of unearthing talent and handing out a professional esports contract as it seeks to expand across a range of titles including Fortnite, Rocket League and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).
“On the pitch, my goal is always to win,” said Bale. “With Ellevens Esports, that winning attitude is just as important. There are similarities between football and esports in that it takes real dedication and sacrifice to reach the top of your game.
“I am looking to recruit a team of world-class players for Ellevens across a variety of games. Unearthing new talent is an exciting part of the process and it’s been really exciting to be involved in selecting our line-up of players so far!”
Co-founder and entrepreneur Jonathan Kark continued: “We foresee further explosive growth in this international phenomenon and are actively seeking to deploy significant further capital into complimentary businesses within the Esports ecosystem.”
Co-founder and former professional footballer Larry Cohen said: “Esports is the world’s fastest growing sport and is becoming the new sports franchises of the future. In partnering with a world class footballer in Gareth , we are intending to create a dominant team that enjoys success and growing an engaged fan base of supporters.”
Bale joins a growing list of sporting names who have recently invested in esports, including Michael Jordan and Christian Fuchs.
Ellevens’ professional FIFA players, Pedro Resende, Ethan Higgins and Tyler Phillips starred alongside Bale and content creator Tom Linnell in the franchise’s first promotional video, below.