Written by Emma Anderson, Account Executive at Program and Captain of The Rockettes.
Program was delighted to sponsor and compete in the Tech South West Esport Festival this year with the only all-female team: The Rockettes. Was it daunting going up against team after team of male opponents having had very limited practise – not at all! Gamers who play in Esports are a part of a welcoming community, and it’s time that those with an interest in Esports, whether beginners or star players, got involved with the action.
So what’s Esports all about?
Esports has seen unprecedented growth over the last few years, becoming a global phenomenon with a following that rivals traditional sports. However, despite its huge popularity, women are largely underrepresented in Esports.
Revenue in the Esports market in the UK is forecast to continuously increase between 2023 and 2027 by a total of 21.3 million U.S. dollars (+42.49 percent). What’s more, the South West is becoming an increasingly more prominent player in the tech industry; where Esports lives and breathes. The Tech South West Esports Festival, brings together a thriving regional tech sector for some explosive matches of Rocket League, to ignite the spark of some truly great business connections.
My highlights from the Tech South West Esports Festival 2023…
As Captain of The Rockettes, and first time Esports attendee, I approached the day with little knowledge on what to expect. One thing I did know for certain is that our team was the only all-female team in a room full of male professionals, who game regularly and represented local businesses in the tech sector; a sector with just 24% of roles filled by women in the UK.
Whilst the Rockettes weren’t festival winners, our opponents were keen to see a female team involved in the competition and were impressive to witness on the virtual reality field, scoring goals and applying well-practised techniques.
Diversity is welcomed in the Esports industry, all it takes is the encouragement to give it a go!
Promoting diversity in Esports goes beyond ensuring equal representation. It’s about celebrating the different perspectives, experiences, and skills that female gamers bring to the table. From marketing campaigns to event hosting, emphasising the value of diversity in Esports makes for a more inclusive culture. The culture that Tech South West creates through their Esports Festival welcomes and promotes inclusivity and diversity. The Esports Festival offered a jam-packed schedule that provided plenty of opportunities for tech businesses to network and get to know each other in a fun and active environment. Why make a business introduction over a cup of coffee when you can make connections over a cyber security escape room with the South West Police? Or perhaps catch up with tech business partners by having a go at a VR flying simulator experience. The tech on the day made for some truly unique ice-breaker moments that helped connect the businesses attending through what they do best – sharing their passion for tech.
Congratulations to the winners of the Tech South West Esports Festival 2023: Timewade!
The day’s Rocket League matches consisted of morning and afternoon sessions where teams went head-to-head to bag a trophy. The state-of-the-art Esports facilities at Exeter College provided optimum gaming conditions. Whilst we didn’t score too many goals, we played against a range of experience levels and had a great time catching up with the other teams: Software Solved, Ashfords LLP, Re-flow Field Management, Jurassic Fibre, Rowe IT, Rocketmakers, Singer Instruments, Grey Matter, Webselect, Bishop Fleming, Ghyston, Adopstar, BD, AdLib, Whistl South West and Radio Exe. And the big winners of the day were… *drumroll* IT experts, Timewade! Congratulations to everyone that won a trophy, a medal or just scored some goals and had a great time.
Let’s keep the diversity going…
Brands and sponsors have a big role to play in championing females in Esports. By sponsoring female players and teams, supporting female-focused tournaments, and utilising platforms to promote gender equality, we can encourage more diversity within the industry. That’s where Program comes in. We’re your friendly, positive impact brand, marketing and PR agency with a flair for highlighting the human side of tech.
Program work with tech companies in the South West to help communicate their message and promote the work they do for the industry. You can find out more about what we do at https://program.agency/.
Tech South West holds regular Esports festivals that bring people together, representing organisations from across the region, for some friendly gaming competition. Find out more about Tech South West and their upcoming events at http://www.techsouthwest.co.uk.