Leading executives and experts from four continents, operating in the esports ecosystem, have heralded last week’s inaugural Esports BAR as being unique and have overwhelmingly voiced their support for a second edition.
Organised by Reed MIDEM, Esports BAR brought together delegates from 18 countries (drawn from Europe, Asia, North and South America) representing esports teams, leagues and tournaments, game publishers, brands and agencies and related media platforms. Over two and a half days, participants engaged in a series of intense networking events and business meetings.
Alban Dechelotte, Senior Entertainment Marketing Manager at The Coca-Cola Company summed up the mood. “I’m thrilled to have been part of the inaugural Esports BAR. This format is exactly what I was dreaming of – meeting the whole esports industry at the same time and in a great place. This is the most efficient event I’ve attended so far.”
The 115 esports delegates from 69 companies who attended the first Esports BAR in Cannes, France, were particularly upbeat about the format which included pre-booked, face-to-face meetings. “The one-to-one meetings, which is unique to Esports BAR, meant that in a short space of time one could have very productive initial exchanges with the major actors in the sector,” enthused Christophe Agnus VP, Project Development at Vivendi Content. “Every ‘first’ is a journey into the unknown. Esports BAR was such a fantastic experience that not only made the ‘unknown’ exciting but exceeded our expectations. Cannes, the beach, the people, the veterans and very interesting new people, plus the format, made it the best esports conference I have attended so far and makes me look forward to the next edition,” added Ralf Reichert, CEO, ESL-Turtle Entertainment.
Among the major companies involved in esports, Esports BAR welcomed digital platforms Twitch, Facebook and YouTube, media giants Orange, Vivendi, Canal+ and Discovery, game publishers EA, Activision Blizzard, Bandai and Rovio, esports pure players ESWC, Webedia and ESL and major brands including Pepsi, Sennheiser, The Coca Cola Company and Voyages-SNCF.
YouTube’s Global Head of Esports, Lester Chen, said the quality and diversity of delegates had left him impressed. “Esports BAR had by far the largest number of decision-makers and industry leaders of any conference I’ve been to. The meetings organised were informative, meaningful and well-rounded. I’ve been able to make several worthwhile connections and met players in the esports space who are pioneering the next generation of content,” he said.
“The concept of Esports BAR is simple and efficient. We guarantee participants up to 20 pre-organised meetings with potential business partners over the two and a half days. This allows them to meet with the people that matter to their development, whether that involves discussing business goals, media rights acquisitions, sponsorship deals, joint ventures or other subjects. The various networking events allow those discussions to be continued in a less formal atmosphere in Cannes” noted Jérôme Delhaye, Director of Reed MIDEM’s Entertainment Division. “Client reaction has been so positive, with an unprecedented a 96% satisfaction rate, that we are now looking at the possibility of holding a second Esports BAR outside France in 2017.”
Some companies took advantage of Esports BAR to announce significant new deals. Among them, news broke in Cannes that Canada’s premium PAY-TV network Super Channel is partnering with U.K.-based Ginx eSports TV to launch a linear TV and on-demand channel before this summer. The new broadcast entity will carry live multiplayer video gaming events, esports news and lifestyle programmes related to gaming. In France, leading PAY-TV channel Canal + has already launched a weekly esports show called “Canal Esport Club.” The French PAY-TV and its parent company Vivendi, are known to have mapped out an ambitious esports development strategy for the next three years.
“When you have major media companies like ESPN, Turner, Super Channel, Sky and Canal+, involved in esports, major sports franchises such as the NBA or soccer clubs Paris St Germain, AS Roma and Manchester City, the giant games producers, the digital platforms and the global brands, then you know something exciting is happening,” noted Reed MIDEM’s Jérôme Delhaye. “Recent reports put the global value of esports at around $500 million this year and estimate that revenues could reach $1-1.5 billion by 2020. Esports BAR’s goal is to help broker the business relationships required to develop the industry,” concluded Delhaye.
About Reed MIDEM
Founded in 1963, Reed MIDEM is an organiser of professional, international markets that are essential business platforms for key players in the sectors concerned. These sectors are MIPTV, MIPDOC, MIPCOM, MIP CANCUN and MIPJUNIOR for the television and digital content industries, MIDEM for music professionals, MIPIM, MIPIM Asia, MIPIM UK, and MIPIM Japan for the real estate industry and MAPIC, Retail Real Estate Market brought by MAPIC in Shanghai and MAPIC Italy for the retail real estate sector. www.reedmidem.com
About Reed Exhibitions
Reed MIDEM is a division of Reed Exhibitions, the world’s leading event organiser, with over 500 events in 43 countries. In 2015 Reed brought together over seven million active professionals from around the world generating billions of dollars in business. Today Reed events are held throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Africa and organised by 41 fully-staffed offices. Reed Exhibitions serves 43 industry sectors with trade and consumer events. It is part of the RELX Group plc, a world-leading provider of information solutions and analytics for professional and business customers across industries. www.reedexpo.com
(Image) Source: Press release