Esports infrastructure company Vindex has become the first gaming firm to be added to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Innovators Community, the company has announced.
The company, co-founded by former Major League Gaming (MLG) founders Mike Sepso and Sundance DiGiovanni, provides technology and services for some of the world’s biggest esports events.
According to the WEF, the Global Innovators Community is “an invitation-only group of the world’s most promising start-ups and scale-ups that are at the forefront of technological and business-model innovation.”
Speaking about the announcement, Sepso, Vindex Co-Founder and CEO said: “We are honoured to be the first company exclusively in the videogame industry to join the World Economic Forum’s Global Innovators Community. Esports is a global phenomenon, and the videogame industry is expected to hit $175 billion this year—more than movies, music, and many other sectors in entertainment.
“Vindex will work with the World Economic Forum to broaden global understanding of esports and work with private and public member organisations to promote the role of esports and gaming as a worldwide economic driver.”
Previously Vindex acquired GAME’s Belong Gaming Arena division, with plans to roll out over 500 esports venues in the US and a further 1000 in other countries—particularly in Europe. In January the company also established a partnership with Canadian cinema company IMAX, to “create esports events and exclusive content” in IMAX cinemas.
As part of its inclusion in the Global Innovators Community, Vindex will participate in the WEF’s initiative, ‘Shaping the Future of Media, Entertainment and Sport’, by identifying new business models for content and distribution.
“We’re thrilled to have Vindex join the Global Innovators Community because the company will be instrumental in helping to showcase the potential of gaming within the larger picture of entertainment and media,” commented Kirstine Stewart, Head of Shaping the Future of Media, Entertainment and Sport platform, World Economic Forum. “[Vindex] will be working with us on projects exploring new business models in our sector. This work paves the way for greater knowledge and adoption of esports and gaming worldwide, which will directly influence the growth of other key industries.”
Vindex launched in 2019 with $80m (£67.52m) in capital, and acquired Next Generation Esports soon thereafter. Around this time the company also launched Esports Engine. In July 2020, Vindex acquired Belong and all associated intellectual property from Fraser Group’s Game Digital. Sepso has been involved with the WEF for several years.
Esports Insider says: Vindex has been a huge success since its 2019 launch, led by industry veterans. The company’s ambition is massive, and this is yet another indicator of the gaming industry’s reach. Vindex provides services not just for professional esports tournaments but also for gamers generally, evidenced by its huge investment in gaming arenas worldwide. Providing impressive infrastructure and technology in such a lucrative industry—and doing it well—has made Vindex an enviable company.