Who organizes eSports tournaments in the CIS in 2018

Who organizes eSports tournaments in the CIS in 2018

Large eSports tournaments have millions of dollars in prize money, not only abroad, but also in the CIS countries. But who is behind these tournaments? Who organizes these events and who invests in the development of eSports in the CIS? Let’s find out.

ESforce Holdings

It is the largest eSports holding in the CIS today. It owns the Virtus.pro and SK Gaming. In addition, the organization owns 11 web sites (the key one is Cybersport.ru), 50 video channels and its own production and distribution studio RuHub.

The holding owns Yota Arena as well, it has become one of the largest sites for eSports tournaments (total area – 5000 m2). Speaking of tournaments, ESforce conducts competitions, called Epicenter, in Dota 2 and CS:GO. The prize fund of the CS:GO tournament, which took place in October 2017 in St. Petersburg, was $500.000. 12 thousand people came to the arena to watch it, and another 30 million users watched the online broadcast.

Who organizes eSports tournaments in the CIS in 2018

Russian eSports Federation

This Russian public organization is aimed at forming the Russian national eSports team. In addition, experts develop rules for specific types of eSports on the basis of this organization; which are later submitted for approval in the Ministry of Transport.

In 2017, the Federation held the finals of two Russian eSports Cups. 11 thousand players took part in the competitions. In addition, Federation launched a series of open Russian eSports Federation tournaments, in which non-professional players can take part. 80 thousand persons have taken part in tournaments of Federation last year.


This is one of the most famous eSports organizations in the CIS, founded by Ukrainian businessman Roman Romantsov in 2011. It holds tournaments and participates in the organization of international competitions, both professional and amateur. The main directions are Dota 2, Counter-Strike, Hearthstone, StarCraft II, World of Tanks, PUBG.

Starladder participates in the organization of the WESG 2017 Grand Final with a total prize pool of $3.921.000.

Who organizes eSports tournaments in the CIS in 2018


This Russian eSports project was launched in 2014. Previously, the team ran its own small tournaments, got grants later and came to the federal level. Today, the company usually is a co-organizer of major tournaments. The preparation for CS:GO qualifying matches for WESG 2017 Russian National Qualifications is among the latter.

The company organizes stream games and owns its own online store of gamer products Shopucc (now only mouse pads are available there).


The Belarusian organization, known for World of Tanks, World of Warplanes and World of Warships, is also involved in the creation of eSports tournaments. For example, the company organized a professional eSports league Wargaming.net League (WGL), where it holds world-class tournaments. WGL held the final of the World of Tanks in Moscow in 2017 with the the prize fund of $300.000.

Who organizes eSports tournaments in the CIS in 2018

Who invests in the development of eSports in the CIS?

In late January 2018, the Internet Initiatives Development Fund announced its intention to invest half a billion rubles over a year and a half to develop the computer games and eSports market in Russia. So far, the organization has launched a three-month accelerator for IT companies that will develop technologies for analyzing and processing data on the player's behavior.

One of the most memorable investments into eSports in the CIS dates back to 2015. USM Holdings owned by Alisher Usmanov invested $100 million in the Virtus.pro team. USM was then renamed ESforce, mentioned above. Later, in January 2018, Mail.ru Group repurchased 100% of ESforce's e-business holding company for $100 million.

At the end of 2017, the founder of Life newspaper and LifeNews Aram Gabrelyanov financed the Mid.tv. The amount invested was not disclosed. According to the entrepreneur, Mid.tv intends to organize competitions and create their own teams of players.

You can find more about eSports earnings, eSports education, and industry opportunities at Russia’s unique conference dedicated to eSports – eSPORTconf Russia 2018.

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