Champions Forging Singapore’s Path in Global Esports

Esports, otherwise known as electronic sports, has seen an exponential growth in popularity worldwide over the recent years. Essentially, Esports involves professional competitive video gaming. Although this concept has been in existence for quite some time, the swift evolution of digital technology in the latter years has opened up new horizons. As indicated by Statista, the number of Esports enthusiasts around the globe is forecasted to surpass 318 million, a pronounced leap from the 215.2 million registered in 2020. During Esports tournaments, like traditional sports, tens of millions of supporters globally rally behind their preferred teams, with Singapore’s BLEED Esports being a fans’ choice.

As of the time of this article, BLEED Esports tops the list of Singaporean Esports establishments, being the recipient of numerous titles and accolades. Their victories include clinching the titles at the 2023 VALORANT Ascension championship, the 2023 DOTA 2 DPC SEA Tour 3 Division I, SEA League 2023, and the fifth regular season of Mobile Legends: Bang Bang’s MPL Singapore. Beyond these individual victories, perhaps the organization’s crowning achievement has been bringing honor to their homeland by representing it commendably on the international stage.

Ian Huston, the COO of BLEED Esports, acknowledges that Esports is not yet fully recognized in their region. However, they have been able to bag numerous titles thanks to the top-notch players that play for their team. Contrary to being the host of the most viewed Esports event of all time, the 2021 Free Fire World Series, Singapore still remains an underdog in the Esports world. This underdog status has spurred Huston and his team to strive to bolster their country’s profile in the field. 

In the initial days, convincing championship-grade players to join the team was a daunting endeavor. Hardly any professionals were prepared to leave their positions in well-established European teams to move to Singapore, an absolute unknown. Unfazed by this, the team at BLEED Esports pivoted to focus on building a local team consisting of five Singaporeans. This squad wound up winning the SEA Esports championship in 2021, providing BLEED Esports with the prominence it deserved. 

More wins helped enhance BLEED Esports’ status. They started signing up professional players who moved to Singapore, where the organization has its headquarters. The establishment has now grown into a leading organization with four championship teams competing in the games: DOTA 2, VALORANT, Rainbow 6 Siege, and Mobile Legends Bang Bang. The BLEED Esports VALORANT team is currently enjoying an 18-match winning streak.

Within a span of only three years, BLEED Esports realized their dream of putting Singapore on the global Esports map, and the organization they tirelessly built has blossomed. But this is just the start of the journey this group of Esports enthusiasts intends to undertake. Considering the projected significant growth in Esports revenues, Huston plans to ride this wave and make his establishment internationally famous. His ultimate goal is to build more and better teams that will rule different categories, thereby pushing Singapore further up the global Esports rankings.

The last three years have taught Huston the importance of perseverance. Despite the challenges and setbacks, he insists on never giving up, since every problem has a solution if approached from a different perspective. Ian Huston emphasizes, “As entrepreneurs, we should never fear starting from scratch. It may seem intimidating to compete with the big players, but truth be told, every dog has its day.” 

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