On December 29 Ukrainian Esports Federation has published an annual report on its activity in 2018. Since its foundation in Spring of 2018, UESF has already held 55 Tournaments in different parts of Ukraine, opened 23 regional offices, and spent 850,000 UAH for prize pools, in the equivalent of gaming periphery and money. In this interview, the Head of Ukrainian Esports Federation Artur Yermolayev told us about plans for 2019, unique esports platform developed by UESF, a partnership with big international brands, and much more.
— Hi, Artur. At the end of December 2018 Ukrainian Esports federation has published an annual report. Are you satisfied with the results?
— Yes, we’re definitely satisfied with the results. Good results and positive feedback motivate us for the future progress and development of the federation.
— Now you are in process of getting official Ukrainian status. Is it possible that by the end of 2019 you will get governmental support?
— We do all we have to do to get national status. But it is not a restraining factor for the growth of UESF. Moreover, getting this status is not even a first-priority goal.
— Some time before you’ve stated that there would be 70 tournaments in 2019. What else do you plan this year? What should Ukrainian amateurs expect?
— We have plenty of plans! Everything depends on our sponsors and partners, so we announce only confirmed events. However, we work hard on a bigger amount of projects, for instance, on student’s and school’s leagues, corporate leagues, partnerships with other federations for the slot trades. The last one gives us a chance to send amateur teams to the tournaments all over the world.
— Tell us about unique esports platform developed by UESF. When it becomes available for use? What players will get of its use?
— We are going to start it during the first half of 2019. The platform will be really multifunctional. In a few words, it’s something like an online-hub for creating teams, hosting the tournaments, and calculating rating of teams and players, who participate in UESF-supported tournaments.
— Last year you’ve published a teaser of amateur CS:GO and Dota 2 tournaments with overall prize pool of 1.000.000 UAH/ 500.000 UAH respectively. When we will be able to see an official announcement on details? And do you have plans to raise prize pools in the future, for nobody has ever organized alike tournaments before?
— Of course, we have already raised prize pools and want to raise it in the future. Soon you can expect official announcement of the tournament.
— The esports market (including its amateur segment) grows very fast. Has Ukrainian eSport Federation any forecasts on its progress? What do you think on eSports future in Ukraine in 3-5 years?
— In 3-5 years we want amateur esports to become a lodgement for formation of international level teams and players. We have all needed for this: infrastructure and UESF support.
— Last announcements prove that big international brands don’t hesitate to enter the eSports sphere. Is UESF ready to cooperate with these companies?
— Yes, we are ready and negotiating all the time. Today international brands want to get an audience, which is anyhow connected with esports. We at UESF are ready to give them solutions for their interests in Ukraine.
— The last but not the least question. Except being a Head of the Ukrainian eSports Federation, you are also a founder of ‘Windigo Gaming’ eSports organization and owner of one of the biggest European and the biggest Ukrainian Esports arena — "Windigo Arena" in Dnipro. Do you plan future big projects connected with gaming or esports industry?
— There are lots of ideas, that sometimes become projects. By this time, we are working hard on projects we have already started. But I am sure that in future we’ll implement much more ideas. We have a lot of plans for expanding the Arena and organization in general.