Last week we reported that the World Esports Association and Hi-Rez Studios are teaming up to bring the Paladins Premier League to life, with Facebook Live broadcasting all the content for the competition, and now Leo Olebe, director of global gaming partnerships at Facebook, has told GamesIndustry.biz that Facebook has plenty more plans to expand into esports.
"We're all in," Olebe explained. "We're putting all of our cards, all of our chips on the table. We fundamentally believe that games are an incredible way to connect people to each other and videos are an incredible way to do that too. With our understanding of those two concepts, we're going to invest and invest. Some things will work, some things won't."
"We have 800m connected Facebook gamers every month," he says. "The scale is there, so through great partnerships like this one we can help gamers find each other, create meaningful connections and provide a great experience for [games like] Paladins."
"It's really not comparable [to anything else]," co-founder and COO of Hi-Rez Todd Harris adds when talking about Facebook. "It's also very global, and Paladins is a very global game. We've seen the Facebook statement and actions around enabling communities and powering video - both of those concepts are forged into our DNA. That's the way we think about marketing our games. Having a partner that shares that gives us optimism."
Is Facebook a brand that could be effective with a move into esports?