In The News
Today’s top stories (aside from Ninja) can be found in the Extra Esports News section.
Tyler “Ninja” Blevins broke up with Twitch and announced yesterday he is moving streaming platforms to exclusively work with Microsoft’s Mixer. Industry reactions were ones of genuine surprise, with many arguing this is a step in the right direction for competition in the streaming market. At the time of his leaving, Ninja boasted almost 18 million Twitch followers and 479 million views.
GameStop laid off 50 managers as it continues to languish, GameSpot’s Eddie Makuch writes. “A memo announcing the move leaked on Twitter. It states that more than 50 ‘field leaders’ are losing their jobs. Those affected include regional managers, district managers, loss prevention managers, and HR staff, according to the letter.”
A majority of Chinese “consumers prefer free-to-play or ad-funded games over premium titles,” GI.biz’s Haydn Taylor reports. “Additionally, 85% reported that they spend on mobile games, with 3% spending more than $50 (¥330) a month.”
Bandai Namco is “opening a new company that will focus on making mobile games for markets outside of Asia,” VentureBeat’s Mike Minotti reports. “Bandai Namco Mobile’s HQ will be Barcelona, Spain. The new division will open in 2020, and it plans to begin hiring in the coming months.”
Koch Media is expanding into Poland with a dedicated branch, GI.biz’s James Batchelor writes. “The department will be headed up by general manager Maciej Turski, who leaves his position at Polish distributor CDP, and will be responsible for all video game releases in the region.”
Creative Assembly and NetEase are partnering to bring “the Total War series to China. The UK studio announced the deal on its website, and explained the ‘long-term partnership’ will give NetEase the rights to publish every single Total War title,” Gamasutra’s Chris Kerr reports.
Extra Esports News:
FaZe Clan is counter-suing Tfue for alleged breach of contract, The Verge’s Julia Alexander reports. FaZe claims “he’s violated his contract by disparaging the company and trying to form a rival e-sports organization … Faze is now saying Tenney made more than $20 million from streaming, gaming endorsements, and sponsorships, and that he ‘shared almost none of this income with Faze Clan.’”
Kroenke Sports & Entertainment is being sued by Sentinels CEO Robert Moore “regarding a joint venture between the two entities,” ESPN’s Jacob Wolf reports. “Moore alleges Josh Kroenke, an executive of the group and the heir of Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, did not inform Moore of their pursuit to purchase Echo Fox, a deal which the sports group agreed to for $30.25 million on July 23.”
Racist Echo Fox investor Amit Raizada gave his side of the story on the ongoing battles of Echo Fox, which has been forced to sell its LoL slot after his unsuccessful ouster. “‘Go look at the video ESPN did with us at Undefeated. Go look at what he wrote in the Players’ Tribune about us,’ Raizada opened. ‘We were friends then for about 17 years and now all this?’” he told Upcomer’s Kevin Hitt. “‘Rick has never put in any of his own money into Echo Fox, not one dollar of his own cash,’” Raizada charged.
Partnerships & Sponsorships:
Newzoo and Team Liquid are partnering, according to a tweet. “We’ll be working together to bolster the team’s business strategy and Newzoo’s #esports models!”
Starbucks will serve as the “presenting sponsor for the first Major of the Championship Series season which will now be called the Madden NFL 20 Classic,” TEO’s Andrew Hayward reports.
Interviews: ESL’s David Neichel (TEO).
Happy birthday Sandro “FreaKii” Holzwarth!