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IBC looks to unlock esports opportunities with new showcase

IBC has announced a new esports showcase in partnership with gaming agency Unlocked to bring the latest in gaming to the broader media industry

Gaming is set to play a key role at this year’s IBC, with organisers announcing a new three-pronged esports showcase that will offer a dedicated zone on the show floor, a series of presentations and panels in the Showcase Theatre, and focused tech tours that will provide esports organisations a guide to production and delivery elements featured at the event.

“We are thrilled to have esports back at IBC with a live showcase that will bring together the gaming industry with the broader M&E community,” said IBC director Steve Connolly. “We are taking the gaming elements of the show to the next level, offering esports industry organisations the opportunity to engage more fully with potential media tech partners while learning more about how they can reach wider audiences through broadcasting and streaming initiatives. At the same time, media companies will gain new, hands-on knowledge about the ins and outs of competitive gaming and how that works for companies developing content for new and emerging audiences.”

The esports zone in Hall 8 is being run in partnership with Belgium-based gaming and esports agency Unlocked. Gaming experts will demonstrate the latest esports production workflows and technology via three distinct configurations: stadiums, smaller venues, and home-based set-ups. The interactive zone will use racing simulators to capture gameplay and generate content that will be produced and played out for streams of the week-long competition. The esports zone will also include a networking area and partner zone, offering visitors the opportunity to meet and ask questions of esports experts from Unlocked.

“The esports zone offers a fantastic opportunity for the media and entertainment community to fully experience gaming as a live spectator sport,” said Steven Leuvens, co-chief executive officer and founder, Unlocked. “It’s great to see IBC recognising the growing importance of esports and finding a way to enable people from all parts of the media industry to connect with the gaming organisations while becoming immersed in an onsite esports event. We are excited to be part of IBC2023.”

The IBC2023 esports showcase will also feature a one-day gaming content programme at the Showcase Theatre on Monday, 18 September. Speakers from Omdia, HaZAnimation, Ubisoft, Media Monks, and more will explore the exciting developments at the intersection of gaming and media and debate what the future might hold.

Also available at IBC to Premium Pass holders are a roundtable discussion on gaming in the entertainment industry, and an exclusive report on the convergence of gaming and media, produced by OMDIA, Official Premium Research Partner.

The two dedicated tours of the show floor will highlight the broad range of esports-related technology from across the supply chain. Curated by industry specialists, the tours will take attendees on a journey through IBC’s 13 halls to discover the latest tech trends and products enabling the continued phenomenal growth of esports as a live broadcast or streamed spectator event. The tours will touch on elements such as production distribution, streaming software, and studio graphics. Companies whose stands will be featured on the tours include Magnifi, LucidLink, Clear-Com, Aldena Telecomunicazioni s.r.l., Yupp Video Services, Pixotope, NETINT Technologies, and Studio Network Solutions.