IESF solidifies position after signing MoU with AESF
The International Esports Federation, which purports to be the governing body for the fragmented esports industry, and the regional Asian Electronic Sports Federation have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop esports in Asia and globally.
In signing the MoU, the IESF recognises the AESF as the sole federation for esports in Asia, with the AESF reciprocating this for the IESF on the international level.
The agreement unites all of the federations’ constituent member associations and federations, many of whom were already members of both.
The agreement was signed yesterday by Colin Webster, president of the IESF, and AESF president Kenneth Fok digitally due to the on-going coronavirus travel restrictions.
Webster said: “The MoU between IESF and the AESF further reinforces IESF’s position as the only true international federation for esports. Together, the two federations will ensure a greater degree of delivery and expertise, as well as ensuring the development and recognition of esports as a sport.”
Members of the IESF board include vice-president Vlad Marinescu, former director-general of SportAccord, current Korean Esports Association president Young-Man Kim and Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, a member of Abu Dhabi’s royal family.
The IESF is a South Korean-based non-profit organisation established in 2008, describing itself as “the only body to truly represent the entire esport community.”
It now comprises of 60 national member federations, including four new federations announced today, Colombia’s Federation Colombiana de Deportes Electronicos, Kazakhstan’s Qazaq Cybersport Federation, Turkey’s Turksh Esports Federation and Ukraine’s Federation of E-Sport of Ukraine.
Late last year, it dismissed claims by newly-formed rival Global Esports Federation to be the sport’s first worldwide governing body, with Webster insisting the IESF is the only body capable of being recognised as a true international federation with a footprint on every continent.
While confirming the MoU, AESF also announced esports will feature as an official medal event at the 2021 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games, scheduled to be held in Bangkok and Pattaya from 24 April to 5 May.
The AESF said: “With the objective of having AESF as the ‘Official Continental Esports Federation’ we can also confirm that for the first time in AIMAG’s history, esports will be one of the official medal events.”
Esports has previously featured as a demonstration event at the AIMAG, with competitions in four titles, including Heathstone, StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void, The King of Fighters XIV, and Dota 2.
Meanwhile, Turtle Beach, the gaming audio and accessory brand, has expanded its deal with US-based esports organisation NRG ESports.
Under the original deal, Turtle Beach became the official gaming audio partner of NRG’s Call of Duty League franchise, the Chicago Huntsmen, providing the team with headsets.
Under the expanded agreement, Turtle Beach becomes the official gaming audio of more NRG’s teams, while ROCCAT, Turtle Beach’s PC brand is now NRG’s official gaming accessories partner for keyboards, mice and other PC peripherals.
NRG fields teams across a variety of titles, including Call of Duty, Apex Legends, Fortnite and Rocket League.
The franchise has previously received investments from NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, NFL running-back Marshawn Lynch, actress and singer Jennifer Lopez, MLB star Alex Rodriguez and Dutch DJ Tiesto.
Elsewhere, SK Gaming, the Germany-based esports outfit, has extended its partnership with premium audio brand EPOS for a third year.
SK Gaming and EPOS, previously named Sennheiser, first partnered in 2018 launching one of esports first co-branded items, the Sennheiser PC 160 SK Gaming Edition headset.
Under the extension, SK Gaming players will use EPOS headsets when streaming and competing at events. The deal also includes a jersey sponsorship and giveaways for fans.
EPOS recently renewed a similar deal with Danish esports organisation North. Earlier this month, it also partnered with Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament organiser Blast.