ESL plans to elevate esports into television style production. The first step in their venture has been to partner up with former Fox TV executive David Hill. Plans include TV best practices, recruitment of broadcasting talent and considering incorporation of a pay per view model for big events.
According to Variety, ESL has made big plans to take esports into the next level.
ESL, the largest video game event company in the world and the oldest professional esports organization that is still operational has partnered up with the former Fox TV executive, David Hill.
Hill will work on special projects; including training production teams and recruiting new broadcast talent to bring esports production value on par with television standards.
Being absolutely fair, it’s not the acme of television production. We’re going to make gaming [TV] network-ready, because we firmly believe the next big thing in entertainment is video gaming.
Best known for his time at Fox TV as a senior executive, he was also the first president of Fox Sports from 1993-1994 which he launched. He was monumental in creating the score/time-remaining on-screen box and the first-down graphic for NFL broadcasts. Hill co-produced the 88th Academy Awards and was executive producer for “The X Factor” and “American Idol.”
We saw that there’s an opportunity with David’s creative genius to elevate the overall level of our content production
– ESL exec chairman Steven Roberts
Employing Hill specifically for ESL’s larger tournaments, one idea on the table is to consider launching a pay-per-view model for its biggest events.
ESL Plans and progression
Last April ESL announced their plans to launch their own Esports Television channel.
ESL has an audience of over 100 million digital viewers with over 2,000 hours of live gaming and esports content. It has been reported that expectations are the broadcast will reach more territories accommodating the 2 billion gamers and 250 million esports fans that ESL expects the industry will have by the end of next year.
In July 2015 Modern Times Group (MTG) signed an agreement to acquire 74% of Turtle Entertainment, the world’s largest esports company that operates under the well-known ESL brand. The ground breaking €78 million acquisition gave MTG – a non-esports based company, the majority of ownership.
Shortly after, in November 2015, MTG announced their complete acquisition of DreamHack – one of the world’s largest esports companies and organizer of the world’s largest digital festivals – for an enterprise value* of SEK 244 million (over 28 million USD).
*The enterprise value (EV) measures the value of the ongoing operations of a company. It is a measure of the theoretical takeover price that an investor would have to pay in order to acquire a particular company, free of its debts and liabilities.