Esports Federation of India (ESFI) and the Indian leading multiplex chain, INOX Leisure Ltd (INOX) unveiled the first-of-its-kind collaboration. In this partnership, INOX will be providing a never-seen-before community viewing experience of esports tournaments on the big screens, for the fans, and provide exposure to elevate the game to the next level throughout the country.
As a cinema partner, the multiplex chain will conduct and promote ESFI tournaments across the nation. This association should increase awareness and popularize esports.
Through several partnerships, INOX has shown its support towards Indian sports. They have a longstanding partnership with the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). With this intriguing partnership with ESFI, INOX aims to take esports to the Indian audience using INOX cinemas as a medium to host esports tournaments, stream global tournaments and offer a talent scouting platform for future global events.
Commenting on this association, Alok Tandon, Chief Executive Officer, INOX Leisure Limited, said, “We are thrilled to bring the action of esports to the cinemas of INOX in collaboration with Esports Federation of India who has been working relentlessly to grow Indian esports and together, make esports, a mainstream sporting activity in India. Our cinemas are present at highly urbane and youth-centric locations servicing the entertainment needs of a predominantly young population in an unmatched ambience equipped with advanced cinema technology. We believe, this advantage, coupled with all our marketing capabilities, will help us popularize esports at a much faster pace in our country. With esports gaining global significance, there cannot be a better time for us to fulfil this responsibility. With this association, we will build more esports IPs and who knows with our initiatives we can unearth a Neeraj Chopra or Abhinav Bindra in esports for our country.”
Vinod Tiwari, President, Esports Federation of India & Director Olympic Council of Asia – NOC & International Relations and Lokesh Suji, Director, Esports Federation of India & Vice President of the Asian Esports Federation (AESF) along with Alok Tandon were present at the event. Hearthstone player, Tirth Mehta, who is the country’s first and only esports medalist who won at the previous Asian Games 2018 was also present at the event virtually from Bhuj.
Vinod Tiwari, said, “For any sport, experience of watching esports tournaments on big screen is enthralling and engaging. This is an opportunity that will help our esports teams and athletes to build and expand their fan base and create scope for more conversations around esports. ESFI is excited about this partnership, as this will also be a concrete step towards taking esports to grassroots, inspire people and give them a platform to showcase their talent.“
“The exclusive partnership comes at a very right time when Asian Games is scheduled in the month of September and ESFI will soon launch “AESF’s Road to Asian Games” to select the national esports contingent of our country. This partnership will see both ESFI & INOX together nurturing and developing the Indian esports talent pool where in ESFI will bring in more partners to further strengthen this objective and create a robust and thriving esports ecosystem,” he added.
India presently has more than 1,50,000 professional esports players that have gathered a viewership of 17 million people across 14 broadcast platforms, according to the E&Y Report titled Esports In India, which was published in June 2021.
The esports player, Tirth Mehta, said, “I believe every sport needs to have good training facilities, awareness, popularity, and support to make it prosper, and ESFI’s partnership with INOX is a progressive step towards a brighter future. I am also confident that such partnerships will happen in the future too. I hope this partnership will inspire many esports athletes who have been working hard to represent India and win medals for the country.”