The 12th BLAST Premier Member Team has been unveiled ahead of the start of the 2021 season, with BIG joining the elite group of organizations. Johannes “tabseN” Wodarz and co. will therefore participate in the upcoming BLAST Premier Spring Groups, set to start on February 4.
The list of BLAST Premier Member Teams includes the likes of Astralis, Vitality, Natus Vincere, and Liquid, with 11 out of 12 member teams currently residing within the top 20 of the world rankings. Across 2021, BLAST Premier tournaments will have a combined prize pool of $2,475,000.
“We undertook an in-depth and extensive process when selecting BIG for our latest Member Team,” Robbie Douek, CEO of BLAST said in a statement. “The scope and level of interest and investment for this final slot is testament to the incredible growth and success of BLAST Premier over the last 12 months.”
The highest-ranked team that is not a BLAST Premier Member Team at the moment is Heroic, who are placed sixth in the world, while other notable omissions are FURIA, fnatic and mousesports. Those teams will therefore have to earn their spots at the Spring and Fall Finals through the cutthroat Showdown events, while Member Teams are handed invites to the Groups.
BIG‘s CEO Daniel Finkler added that this acquisition indicates the organization’s “outstanding development in the past years”, and thanked the company’s investor for the opportunity to become a BLAST member after a contested bidding stage for the 12th slot.
“At this point, we want to thank our investor Marc Staperfeld, who shared our ambition and supported us tremendously with the buy-in fee during the highly competitive bidding process,” BIG‘s CEO added.
The following organizations are currently BLAST Premier Member Teams: