Gaming chair manufacturer Secretlab has announced a partnership with chess company Play Magnus Group (PMG) to become the official chair of the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour.
As a part of the deal, Secretlab will create chairs especially for the tour and furnish the ‘chess esports arena’ at PMG’s studio in Oslo.
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Tour players, such as World Champion and 2021 Champions Chess Tour winner Magnus Carlsen, will play in Secretlab chairs moving forward. Secretlab also made an appearance in last season’s Tour Final, where chess stars had the chance to experience its products.
The 2022 season of the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour will start on February 19th with the Airthings Masters. This is the first of nine monthly events in the year-long season.
Ian Ang, Co-founder and CEO of Secretlab, commented: “With a growing number of tournament viewers, competitive chess has seen a similar rise in popularity. Just like esports professionals, chess professionals need to be completely focused to perform at their best, and the chair plays a crucial role in helping players achieve this.
“Play Magnus Group wanted to equip the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour with pro-grade equipment, and we’re now set to bring our award-winning chairs to the top chess professionals.”
PMG was founded in 2013 by world chess champion Magnus Carlsen, Espen Agdestein and Anders Brandt. It is a merger of digital brands and services focused on delivering e-learning and entertainment experiences for chess fans around the world. In November 2020, Play Magnus was acquired by iChess for an undisclosed amount.
Earlier this year, the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) renewed its partnership with Secretlab for the 2022 season, amongst three others.
Arne Horvei, Tour Director at PMG, added: “Chess players sit for long hours when competing, making the chair one of the most crucial elements to players’ success and long-term health. We are thrilled to kick off this partnership with Secretlab to outfit the world’s leading online chess circuit with the highest performance chairs in esports.”
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Esports Insider says: Chess is experiencing a new wave of popularity that started during the pandemic and after it was highlighted in pop culture through Netflix series ‘The Queen’s Gambit’. It comes as no surprise that chess players and companies would try to break into the esports scene and modernise online chess competitions. Secretlab seems to be one of the brands at the forefront of esports trends as PMG pushes chess into the industry.