Celebrity Esports has gone into liquidation, months after securing partnership deals with the likes of Grenade, Primark and NOW, among others.
The company, founded by Leo Skagerlind, was launched in March 2020 and looked to appeal to a wider audience with esports by using celebrities to take part in tournaments. In January 2021, Celebrity Esports secured investment from former Dragons Den panellist Richard Farleigh.
Nevertheless, after one episode of the CES Superstar League, Celebrity Esports is closing down. As a result, all assets of the company are now being sold to repay those who the firm owes money to.
Esports Insider spoke to Celebrity Esports’s founder in March 2021 following the launch of the CES Superstar League. He described the competition as a complementary component to the esports pyramid.
Following the interview, the company announced partnerships with NOW, Primark, and Grenade. The trio all secured celebrity-led esports teams. Moreover, Celebrity Esports struck deals with Boost Gaming and Yodel.
Esports News UK, who first reported on the story, stated that Celebrity Esports priced its headline partner rights at £1m, with team ownership fees costing £300,000.
Some of the celebrities involved in the competition included UK dance group Diversity, professional footballer Chelcee Grimes, Jimmy Carr, Love Island star Kem Cetinay, and Joel Dommett.
Prior to the CES Superstar League, Celebrity Esports also hosted the NHS Charities Together Cup, which featured the likes of John Terry, Ben Stokes, Joleon Lescott, Chris Kamara, and Paddy McGuinness. The company claimed to have raised over £500,000 for NHS Charities Together.
However, according to Esports News UK’s article, Celebrity Esports only raised £16,500 when the media company spoke to NHS Charities Together.
Esports Insider has reached out to Celebrity Esports for a comment.
Esports Insider says: Despite gaining a multitude of highly reputable sponsors and celebrities, Celebrity Esports is an example of how difficult it is to establish a niche product within the sector. In theory, the thought of having celebrity-driven esports competitions to attract a mainstream audience seems like a smart move. However, it seems that executing that plan proved harder than anticipated and the company has shut down as a result.