With the meteoric rise of the esports industry showing no signs of stopping, the latest company to invest in the world of competitive gaming has their sights set on something a little bigger than a team sponsorship. Nazara, an Indian game development and publishing company, wants to lead their country into the arena of esports, and they plan to invest $20 million for the privilege.
While there have been small, scattered esports tournaments in India for a while, such as the Flipkart Gaming Online Championship, there’s been little in the way of serious organizations. That’s where Nazara wants to come in. With this investment, they intend to create India’s first premiere esports league, bringing in coaches and managers and attracting young talent with the goal of eventually creating Indian teams that can compete on the international stage. Right now, the closest any team came to achieving that was Team Wolf, back in 2014, by qualifying for ESL Cologne and then getting shut out in their first two games.
This will be Nazara’s first move into competitive gaming; their development catalogue is primarily mobile games made in one of several cloneable, established molds (Chhota Bheem Jungle Run, for example, looks awfully familiar). Nazara’s esports league won’t focus on their own titles, but rather on prominent, established esports; so far, Dota 2 and CS:GO are both planned, which makes sense considering Valve’s relatively hands-off relationship to their own competitive titles as opposed to Blizzard or Riot. Whether or not Nazara’s bid to jumpstart the Indian esports ecosystem will pay off remains to be seen.