Esports event production and infrastructure company eFuse has laid off around 30 staff, representing about 30% of its workforce, a company spokesperson told Esports Insider.
The company also said it would be postponing its recently-announced Creator League and offering refunds for any league passes purchased by customers.
Esports Insider has independently confirmed at least a dozen layoffs via announcements on social media made by those affected. Many laid off employees claimed that the layoffs came suddenly.
In a statement sent to Esports Insider, eFuse said it had released around 30% of its staff, or approximately 30 people, to ensure long-term financial stability as it “refocuses towards current, high-value products and offerings.”
The news comes days after eFuse’s September 2nd announcement of the Creator League, a community-focused esports series involving high-profile content creators from the likes of OpTic and OTK Network, amongst others. However, the league was instantly mired by controversy after criticisms by the community about the league’s use of blockchain technology and NFTs.
One of the league’s founding participating content creators, CDawgVA, announced that he planned to withdraw just one day after the announcement, claiming he had not realised the tournament used NFTs. There was also confusion surrounding the role of MrBeast, who announced the league but was not actually participating in it.
An eFuse spokesperson told Esports Insider that the Creator League was not designed as a crypto play. The company apologised for poor communication around the role of blockchain technology, which it said it never intended to be a relevant part of the league and was only using as a historical accounting effort.
The official eFuse statement claims that no cryptocurrency is involved (all purchases are in US dollars), nor are the community passes considered NFTs or tokens.
Matthew Benson, CEO of eFuse: commented in the statement: “The Creator League was an experiment in creator-led, fan-controlled esports. We remain excited about the Creator League and will take some time to reflect on community feedback and refine its structure. As with all ambitious projects, the path toward innovation is winding. We’re prepared to keep learning and pushing gaming forward.”
In the statement, Shawn Pavel, VP of Engineering for eFuse, apologised for the poor communication surrounding the use of blockchain, and said the company had implemented practices to ensure it did not happen again. “To be clear, the Creator League is not an NFT project and we have never sold tokens.”
eFuse did not disclose how long the league will be postponed for. The company announced that as an ‘expression of appreciation’ for fans who purchased passes during the initial sale, eFuse will honour its commitment to host an open (free to enter) Fortnite tournament. eFuse said fans can register for that tournament in the coming weeks.