Esports is one of the fastest growing forms of entertainment in the world. Competitors from all over the world compete in international tournaments with prize pools worth up to $30M. The rise of competitive gaming has been accompanied by a large number of spectators. New Zoo, an esports analytics firm, estimates that 430M+ people will have watched an esports competition in 2019. Additionally, total revenues for the industry are expected to top $1.1B
As popularity surges and revenues increase, opportunities to play professionally and collegiately do as well. There are also opportunities with teams, tournament organizers, developers, software platforms, and publishers for more traditional business roles. The problem is that many people are not aware of the roles that are open. This results in some never getting the opportunity to apply for a job in the field. eFuse exists to help solve these issues.
The company was founded by Benson at Ohio University’s College of Business, after conducting research on the esports and the video game industry. Through his research, Benson realized that the ecosystem supporting each game title was very fragmented. As the industry grew, that fragmentation was compounding and the necessary tools to support professional collaboration in the industry did not exist.
In August 2018, Benson proposed a solution, to build a professional hub with tools built specifically for gaming industry professionals. In November 2018, eFuse, Inc. was founded.
Benson also found that he enjoyed the competitive nature of gaming and realized that strong communities formed around these games as a result of shared interests and competitive drive. While building the eFuse team, Benson made a point to bring on individuals with prior experience in the space, one of which being Tom Newton.
Others have recognized this trend, eFuse’s investors and advisors include the Ohio Innovation Fund and Smart Growth Ventures, both have an excellent record of supporting successful, high growth ventures in the Midwest.