James Lampkin VP of Pro Gaming at ESL talks about PEA & Team Run Leagues w/ Mark Register
Mark – You have the Professional Esports Association which is 9 teams banding together to create their own league, what are your thoughts on that?
James – The true, true story of that whole transition of these negotiations into WESA hasn’t been reported, that’s the reality.
Something like PEA doesn’t pop up out of nowhere and it’s probably not the last type of organization to come together.
It’s not something nefarious, it’s… if you have a large market and a large number of teams and then you’ve got Steve Aoki just announced he’s buying a team, Magic Johnson just joined some other investors and grabbed Team Liquid.
Anybody that’s got enough millions of dollars can just start their own Esports team right now, so what is your natural tendency to do, to get protectionists.
So you’re going to see a lot of teams and organizations going, “hey who are my good friends? Who can we align interests with and build something big with?”
That’s the nature of markets.
That’s the nature of really hyper competitive industries like Esports.
Not all of them are going to survive.
That’s good that we have healthy competition in the market and you’re going to see more things like PEA & WESA.
Some of them will evolve into the standards of the industry. And some will sort of fade into… we had these before like G7 was an organization in the early 2000s which was very much like what PEA or WESA have announced their goals to be… a little bit different goals but sort of the foundation being the same.
That’s what the NFL was, these team owners coming together and saying “hey let’s build something together. We can mutually align our interests, our business interests, and build this great product.”
I think it’s exciting for our industry, we’re sort of at this point now where this is viable for business owners to do.
Ultimately it’s really good for the players because you have more competitive space.
If you want those top players in your new organization or part of your team, you need to be able to add this extra set of values to it.
These types of bodies will add extra value to the teams that are members of these organizations.