ESL Pro League Commissioner Alex Inglot launched on Thursday a Request for Proposals (RFP) process for teams and organisations interested in becoming a partner in the league. The new member will join the “Louvre Agreement” group from Season 14 onwards, filling the void left by 100 Thieves, who withdrew from Counter-Strike in October.
The announcement comes just days into Season 13 of the ESL Pro League, which is now in its seventh year. The tournament will be played entirely online after ESL was forced to scrap plans to hold the playoffs in Malta due to COVID-19 travel restrictions still in place all over Europe.
According to Ralf Reichert, Co-CEO of ESL, “over 15 different organisations, all from different corners of the world” have already enquired about membership opportunities. The Louvre Agreement partners are entitled to a range of benefits, including a permanent spot in ESL Pro League and revenue share in the league and other circuit events.
“It felt like with our foundations now in place and a strong financial year behind us, it was the right time to explore if and how we could extend this stability and opportunity to another team,” Mr. Reichert said.
“We know the best teams want to play our league and take home the trophy, we know our partners and our fellow Members’ partners want to be part of the Pro League: we wanted to see if we could welcome another team into the project we are building together.”
ESL encourages teams and organisations interested in enquiring about the Pro League membership to visit the RFP website or contact the league’s Vice-President of Operations, Hans Jagnow, by email ([email protected]).
Mr. Inglot, who was named ESL Pro League Commissioner in September, praised the league’s ability to adapt to the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic and revealed that the league was able to exceed the minimum revenue targets for 2020 despite both seasons of the league being played online.
“When the 2020 minimum revenue guarantees were set at the start of the year, no one in the scene could have foreseen the challenges COVID would throw up,” the ESL Pro League Commissioner said. “There was genuine trepidation about whether these lofty goals could be met in this new landscape, this new reality. But the year ended with us exceeding those seven-digit guarantees by nearly 20% and with each of our member teams walking away with six figures USD of fresh revenue.
“There were a few raised eyebrows! And with our minimum guarantees set to more than double over the next two years, we are in a very strong and credible position, as are our existing member teams.”