Saudi Arabia teams up with ESL to create global charity esports series
Saudi Arabia has launched a new global charity esports competition with a prize fund of $10 million which will be used to support the battle against the coronavirus pandemic.
The ‘Gamers Without Borders’ series has been created by the Saudi Arabian Federation for Electronic and Intellectual Sports (SAFEIS), with the support of ESL, the sports promoter owned by Sweden’s Modern Times Group, as technical partner.
The seven-week series, which will begin tomorrow and run until 7 June, includes daily and weekly public tournaments and is open to all gamers worldwide and will feature popular game titles.
The tournaments will operate on two levels: an amateur competition for gamers which will feature six global community tournaments per week for the public across the major titles, and international elite level where the best performing amateurs will take on professional gamers.
A share of the $10 million charity prize fund will be on offer and distributed between 12 different organisations leading the fight against the coronavirus, such as the World Health Organisation Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
Sponsorship revenue generated during the event will also be directly donated to charity.
As part of the technical partnership with ESL, the tournaments will be streamed live globally and ESL will provide a broadcast feed in eight different languages, including Arabic, English, Spanish and Mandarin.
The broadcast will also include a fundraiser for fans watching to directly donate to the charity of their choice from the 12 selected.
Abdelatif Sakkoum, ESL’s vice-president business development MENA said: “Leaning on our 20 years of esports experience, ESL accepted to become a partner of the ‘Gamers without Borders’ charity tournament to set up a large competition across eight esports and gaming titles within a very short time frame. We’ll provide and create the best possible conditions to set up a month-long competition for this vital cause.”
Meanwhile Activision Blizzard, the prominent games publisher, has officially launched its Call of Duty: Mobile World Championship, which will kick off later this month.
The publisher has also agreed a partnership with telecoms brand Sony, with its Xperia brand to serve as the tournament’s presenting sponsor.
The competition will initially begin with a qualifying stage on 30 April. The first stage of the championship will then take place through an in-game event where players will advance to the next stage based on their individual performance.
Players that advance will then create teams to compete in ‘stage 2 and beyond’ with details such as prize money, rules, and broadcast platforms to be revealed at a later date.
The tournament has no direct link with Activision’s Call of Duty League or its teams and will be a separate ecosystem within the company’s portfolio.