Esports tournament organizer ESL is launching the ESL Academy as an initiative to promote and elevate players on the Dota 2 grassroots circuit.
Players will compete for a prize pool of $240,000 and a chance to join Dota’s professional circuit.
In partnership with delivery service DHL and platform Dotabuff, the ESL Academy will help develop Dota 2 talent in Europe and North America. Four former professional players will serve as coaches and draft teams from the 40 best-ranked amateur players in each region.
The ranking will be based on Dotabuff’s Reach leaderboard. Coaches will monitor the board from November 2019 to January 2020 and will assemble their teams in mid-January.
The coaches will then train the players over the course of one month. Afterward, teams will compete against each other in both online and offline tournaments. The top competitors from the ESL Academy will play on stage in the acclaimed ESL One tournaments.
Representatives Discuss the Purpose of the ESL Academy
ESL’s Senior Vice President, Product, Ulrich Schulze, says that creating the ESL Academy and “building the path from zero to hero” is in his company’s DNA. He believes that ESL must derive an open system for Dota 2 in order to fulfill its brand purpose.
According to its website, ESL’s brand purpose is “to create a world where everybody can be somebody.“
“We want ambitious players at home to see a clear path forward and to gain experience in playing in professional esports environments,” says Schulze.
He adds that DHL is a “strong partner” that shares ESL’s values. Both companies work to develop ways for Dota players to get noticed and join masters-level tournaments like ESL One.
DHL will assist the ESL Academy by providing facilities to serve as boot camps for the teams. The company’s Head of Group Brand Marketing, Arjan Sissing, says that DHL is “proud to be part of this exciting journey.”
Keep watching this space for more news about the ESL Academy.
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