Esports platform ESPL provides gamers with the opportunity to climb the ladder, to find teammates, to find sponsors – basically to find their way to becoming a pro and to fulfilling their dreams.
“What we decided to build with ESPL is a national leagues system, scale it out across countries, and basically make the infrastructure and the dream really possible for everyone. What we are building is the real zero-to-hero story, starting with national leagues, going to regional leagues and, of course, the final,” declares CEO Michael Broda.
Speaking during an exclusive interview with Esports BAR, Broda explains the mission of ESPL, the platform’s challenges, brand positioning and the different prospects for innovation and the development of the platform.
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A mobile esports platform
ESPL was launched in 2019 across Southeast Asia, South Asia and Latin America: three main regions where mobile esports are on the rise, thanks to the accessibility of mobile gaming.
For Broda, mobile is definitely the future of esports: “We are not expecting that PC is going away, but in order to get the large audience in future, you have your cellphone with you all the time, right? So on your way in the bus, you can train a bit, and I think that the earlier you start the more you get used to it, to use the controller on the smart phone, [and] the easier it gets for you.”
According to Broda, it is also financially easier for everybody to play on mobile: “In the future, when everything is moving into the clouds, including the computing power, data will be very cheap, computing power will be very cheap. If you play on a cell phone [it] is basically only screen and modem, then it’s accessible for everyone – and this is happening already.”
He continues: “It’s not affordable for everyone to buy a thousand US dollar PC, but I think it’s affordable [for] almost everyone to buy a smartphone, you can almost play every game with [a smartphone], so that’s why in the mass we’re expecting mobile esports to be huge.”
A customer-centric strategy
The main goal for ESPL is to build the best experience for amateur and semi-pro players, so that they come back on the platform everyday. “We want to be the platform for the masses. There should be an offering everyday, to join a tournament or a league”, Broda says.
This includes working with the best media partners, developing the best UX, UI and game design, as well as working with brands and getting sponsors to attract the more casual gamers. As Broda declares: “We need to expand step-by-step in someone who’s not playing on a regular basis. For example, you’re a 40 year old, you’re not interested in playing a league, but you would be interested in playing with a corporate team, step-by-step, and just to have fun with your colleagues at your company. We need to expand more, and turn a casual gamer into a regular playing gamer.”
Innovation through AI
ESPL is also working on a personalised offer that can help connect brands with players and teams: “We are investing a lot of money into tech development to make digital processes simple, to make brand activation easier, and make it easier to find a connection between sponsor and teams, or the tournament experience itself.”
For Broda, AI will be an innovative technology that can help evolve ESPL: “We are fascinated by AI and what it can do, like automated generated highlights or AI coaching. These tools, if you turn them into business models, you can start to connect the social media platforms with the esports’ experience. You can easily start to monetize not only as a company but also as a gamer too.”
ESPL wants to invest in horizontal growth:
“We know that [the]influencer and streamer market is huge, and so we have the potential to grow not only vertically but also horizontally. And we are looking into many AI solutions to develop a business model around it.”