05 Jul 2016

By: Sport Industry Group

One of the fastest growing areas in the industry will be examined at the next Sport Industry Breakfast Club, supported by MP & Silva, when eSports will be discussed, dissected and debated on 7th September.

The members-only networking event will feature Wouter Sleijffers, CEO, Fnatic; Chester King, CEO, International eGames Group; and Hannes Kranich, eSports specialist, DraftKings, on the panel, offering insight into a sport that packs out venues around the world and recently launched a new international governing body.

The panel represents three distinct areas of eSports, Sleijffers is CEO of one of the leading teams, Fnatics, with its own leading merchandise range and is a founding member of the World eSports Association (WESA).

King brings a new approach to eSports, encouraging players to compete for national pride, following an announcement by the UK government in April that it was supportive of an international committee to establish the eGames, an Olympic-style competition pitting countries against each other. The inaugural games will be held in Rio de Janeiro, alongside the 2016 Olympics, with future events planned to be held during Olympic years in host cities.

Kranich will explain how eSports is rapidly becoming a top sport being played on DraftKings, the daily fantasy sports platform, and will also touch on the rising level of options for generating income streams through eSports.

Wouter Sleijffers, CEO, Fnatic, said: “eSports isn’t a hobby gone mainstream, this is a sport full of skill, with a huge fan and viewer base that’s only getting bigger and bigger. For global brands and agencies, eSports is still a greenfield opportunity that's ready to be uncovered and to make a significant and lasting impact on this global audience. And so the brands and agencies need to be paying attention.

“It will be a fantastic discussion and I’m looking forward to meeting as many people as I can to see what we can do, collaboratively, to continue the momentum behind one of the world’s biggest sports.”

Chester King, CEO, International eGames Group, added: “There’s a preconceived perception around eSports in some areas, which is a shame because I think people are missing some huge opportunities. eSports isn’t the future, it’s already here.

“We’re very much looking forward to attending the Sport Industry Breakfast Club and meeting with the UK market. The UK is a fascinating place at the moment, especially when you consider the government’s recent backing of the sport.”

Hannes Kranich, eSports specialist, DraftKings – who also co-founded LoL Stats, an eSports based data company - concluded: “I’m looking forward to delving into what the UK market’s thoughts and perceptions are for eSports. Every day there are more and more opportunities within the eSports sector and the wider industry, as more revenue streams continue to open up. It’s a fascinating place to be right now and it’s only getting bigger. It’s a very exciting time.”

The Sport Industry Breakfast Club, which will take place at The BT Centre, is the industry’s number one networking event series with four content-led networking breakfasts over the course of the year. Each event welcomes up to 200 guests from across the industry for an interview with a panel of leading figures from the world of sport and business.

Memberships are still available with access to the two remaining events in 2016 available for £350 + VAT, with further speakers to be announced soon. Find out more here.