Former Esports Official at Riot Games joins Catalyst

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Avi Bhuiyan, Catalyst

Catalyst Sports & Media, a strategic advisor, investor and talent representative, has announced the hire of Avi Bhuiyan as Executive Vice President of Esports. 

The company, which works across traditional sports too, now has Bhuiyan on board to help lead the esports division with Bryce Blum, EVP of Esports, to further build out this part of the business.

Bhuiyan joins Catalyst from Riot Games, where he was an esports official for Riot’s League of Legends Championship Series (NA LCS), its flagship North American Esports league. In that position, Bhuiyan was the primary point of contact with NA LCS teams for competitive matters and developed policy, strategy, and operational initiatives during a period of strong growth for the league.

Prior to joining Riot Games, Bhuiyan was the founder and editor-in-chief of Esports Guy, a popular esports blog focusing on long-form storytelling about professional esports players. While there, he wrote, edited, designed, and managed the blog’s business operations. As a writer, his pieces have also appeared in other outlets such as ESPN.

Bryce Blum commented: “Avi’s leadership in esports at Riot Games and his insider knowledge of the industry are unparalleled and I am thrilled to welcome him to the team. I look forward to working with him as we transform the face of esports and capitalise on the anticipated 215 million esports viewers by 2019.”

Bhuiyan himself stated: “I am excited to join Bryce and the Catalyst team to fundamentally disrupt the esports industry and improve it for players, publishers, owners and fans.

“It is an honor to work alongside such well-respected professionals as Bryce, and of course Catalyst’s co-founders, Happy Walters and Josh Swartz and the great team they have built around them.  I can’t wait to get started.”

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Catalyst officially launched on November 7, 2016, at which time it was announced that its esports division will make investments and partnerships with ‘up-and-coming leaders in the space’.

So far this has included Super League Gaming, the first and biggest recreational league where gamers compete in movie theaters worldwide, and GumGum, a leading computer vision company that offers innovative advertising and visual intelligence solutions for brands and publishers. The team is also advising global brands such as Dr. Pepper on how to most effectively invest their marketing spend in esports.  

Under Blum and Bhuiyan’s leadership, Catalyst will continue to look for relevant opportunities to create new leadership positions within esports.

Esports Insider says: A strong addition to the Catalyst team with Bhuiyan’s extensive experience, not to mention broad skill-set in the industry, sure to make a significant impact. 

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