Major Esports tournament coming to Raleigh this summer

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The gaming company Ubisoft will host one of its largest events of the year at the Raleigh Convention Center this summer.

The 2019 Six Major Raleigh will take place from Aug. 12 - Aug. 18.

"We feel like by bringing in these competitions, we can really kind of amplify both Raleigh from a destination standpoint, but also from an industry standpoint," explained Loren Gold, the Executive Vice President of VisitRaleigh. "We're very much serious about Esports and gaming, and the development of gaming."

Sixteen teams will be competing for a $500,000 prize, with tourism officials expecting the event will have a $2.1 million impact on the city.

As part of the Destination 2028 plan for Wake County, the Greater Raleigh and Convention Visitors Bureau highlighted an increased presence of Esports in the area.

Gold believes the city has the framework in place to develop the industry.

"With the 10 publishing companies, along with both NC State, which is a top 15 from an academic standpoint simulation and gaming curriculum developer within the university space, and Wake Tech - even at the associate degree level, they have a full game development and simulation lab," said Gold.

The most well-known local developer is Epic Games, which developed the wildly-popular Fortnite game.

Gold estimated the worldwide audience for Esports will reach 550 million people by 2021, adding these competitions currently bring in upwards of $250 million in sponsorship funding and $120 million in prizes.
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