Electronic Sports League
2000 as ESL
ESL Gaming GmbH (formerly known as the Electronic Sports League) is the world’s largest esports company.
The Electronic Sports League was launched in 2000 as the internationalization of the Deutsche ClanLiga. The ESL started as a series of online leagues as well as an online magazine known as ESLGaming.com. Since its launch, ESL has grown to be the largest esports company in the world with offices all around the globe. The Electronic Sports League was rebranded as just ESL in 2014. In July 2015, the Modern Times Group acquired a majority stake (74.04%) in Turtle Entertainment, later increasing it by a further 8.44% in September 2018.
ESL, is nowadays present in 37 countries. Each sections of ESL are operated by ventures under a license granted by Turtle Entertainment GmbH. These sections could correspond to a country, (like ESL Germany for instance), or to a group of low-demography countries (like ESL Nordic for Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark).
ESL has supported over 50 games in different games and runs dozens of tournaments every year.
The ESL Major Series One, or EMS One, was a premier gaming competition, sponsored by RaidCall, for Europe's best in Dota 2. The best teams from Europe competed for an overall prize fund of $121,000 USD making it the largest independent Dota 2 competition at the time. The EMS One featured both Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Dota 2 and consisted of three seasons with four cups each with $1,000 in prizes and topped off by live event finals with larger prizes of up to $39,000.
The new ESL One, the successor to the EMS One league, will bring teams and players from all over the world compete in an eSports tournament unlike any other. Featuring the games Dota 2, Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Battlefield 4, the ESL One will feature events taking place in sports stadiums all over the world. The first, ESL One Frankfurt, will take place between the 28th and 29th of June 2014, at the Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt which will be transformed into a haven for Dota 2 fans from all around the world. Eight teams will be selected to take part in the event: a select few of the world's most notable teams will have invitations extended to them, whilst the bulk of the group will have to qualify for the event through a set of regional qualifiers operated by joinDOTA. Once in Frankfurt, the teams will face off against one another on centre-stage in the hopes of taking home the lion's share of the $150,000 prize pool. Fans of the game will be able to further contribute to the prize pool by purchasing in-game items.