Driven by Explore Waterloo Region and the Region’s Sport Hosting Office, this esports project is intended to develop and implement an operational model that will give Waterloo Region the resources and capabilities to support and grow a healthy and sustainable esports community. “Waterloo is already a national leader in the tech sector,” says Allister Scorgie (photo), Director of Sport Hosting with Explore Waterloo Region. “Esports is a new and growing market and a lot of people in the traditional sports sector are unaware of its potential and possibility. This is a chance for Waterloo Region to start building some excitement around esports.”
This first phase of the project, of four total phases, will conduct market research and facility evaluations to assess and certify Waterloo Region’s readiness for esports. Based on the findings, the project will identify what activities and events are aligned with the Region’s current and future capacities.
Once completed, it will result in a unique strategy and market positioning for Waterloo Region, enabling it to attract and support local, regional, national and international gaming and esports event organizers, leagues, publishers, production companies, programs and communities.
To help facilitate the growth, the destination marketing group has forged an agreement with Subnation, a firm focused on the culture of gaming, to help it develop opportunities in the esports sector. Subnation will be tasked with evaluating the assets currently in place to support the growth of esports and business readiness for esports and video game events and initiatives. The objective is to build a framework that will establish and grow the region as a hub for esports programming and events.
“We are seeing first-hand how COVID has accelerated the need for major cities and regions to advance their internal strategy and external conversations around gaming and esports,” said Ed Tomasi, Subnation Co-Founder and Chief Managing Director. “It is exciting to have this opportunity to work with the innovative Waterloo Region team given their past reputation of embracing new technology and progressive business initiatives. The region has all of the critical components needed to support a diverse spectrum of events and programs, as well as attract new businesses and associated talent.”
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