Filipino esports aficionados find allies in Smart and Dark League Studios.
Smart Communications and Dark League Studios are laying the groundwork to help elevate the esports scene in the country.
Through this partnership, Smart, a telecommunications giant, and Dark League, a rising esports management and production company, are joining forces to help bring esports to the grassroot levels—while also supplementing the pro leagues.
The two organizations plan to do that through Smart’s GIGA Arena, an all-in-one esports platform that aims to provide a pro tournament experience to amateur esports players. The platform will include games like Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (MLBB), League of Legends Wild Rift, and Call of Duty Mobile.
One of the minds behind Dark League is Alfrancis Chua, co-founder and chief marketing officer. Chua, as hoops fans know, is concurrently Barangay Ginebra San Miguel governor and San Miguel Corporation sports director.
The former PBA coach is ecstatic to work with other familiar faces, which include Al Panlilio, president of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), former Meralco Bolts governor, and concurrently president and CEO of PLDT Inc. and Smart.
“Partnership, it’s a negosyo, pero kami it’s a brotherhood, family. We’re gonna help each other para sa inyo na naglalaro ng esports,” said Chua on Wednesday.
Aside from widening the reach of the esports industry, both Smart and Dark League Studios also hope to help build a successful national program that will make noise in international tilts like the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and the Asian Games.
“Our mission is to bring this to the next level. For the competition of SEA Games, the Asian Games is also coming. We wanna be a major player in esports globally,” said Panlilio.
The Philippines, already considered a regional power in the MLBB scene, may just need to brace for more esports growth in the next few years.
(With reports from Martie Bautista, News5)