Esports Insider has learned that the PUBG Europe League (PEL) has been delayed until March due to reported financial issues and venue troubles.
Sources close to the league have informed ESI that the delay is due to PUBG Corp. dragging its heels in providing stipends to StarLadder and, subsequently, the teams that are set to compete. There are also problems with the venue that will host the action.
The PEL was supposed to kick off in late January but that never happened, and a formal announcement has not been made from either PUBG Corp. or third-party tournament organiser StarLadder. A start date of February 15th was attached to a roster announcement from G2 Esports but nothing was confirmed; it has since been debunked by sources. The league is set to be hosted in Berlin once it gets underway.
PUBG Corp. and StarLadder reached out to Esports Insider after this article was published with the following message: “PUBG Corporation and StarLadder are committed to bringing the best esports show possible with the PUBG Europe League. We are eager to reveal more, and we’ll be able to do that beginning of next month.”
A total of 16 teams will take part in Phase 1, six of which have received direct invitations. The remaining 10 squads booked their spot in a closed qualifier last December.
The PEL is part of the PUBG esports season, involving six regional pro leagues and three additional regional pro circuits. Last month, the developer announced that it would be launching a series of financial initiatives to help support the teams across the leagues – this includes profit-sharing on branded in-game items and direct support for operational costs.
Esports Insider says: This isn’t a great start for the league at all. Not only have potential viewers been left in the dark about when PEL is actually starting, but more importantly, it doesn’t instil extensive confidence in PUBG Corp. and its supposed big push into esports. It is worth noting too that it seems clear that the issue is with PUBG Corp., and not StarLadder, a respected tournament organiser based in Ukraine which has been operating in esports for a long while.