“BGMI will become the second largest sport in the country after Indian cricket” - Nimish Raut, Head of Esports and Special Projects, NODWIN Gaming.
An exclusive interview with Nimish Raut about the BGMI Master Series by NODWIN Gaming on Star Sports
A day after the IPL Media Rights Auction for 2022 had concluded, I caught up with Nimish Raut about a super secret esports tournament announcement that Nodwin Gaming was working on. Raut is the global head of esports partnerships and special projects for NODWIN, and as we made our way to his home for the interview, he promised that this tournament would be a game changer for the Indian esports landscape. The cynic in me scoffed at this - almost every esports tournament organizer in India claims to have something 'groundbreaking' in store for fans.
But a few minutes into the interview, I realized that I had to eat my words - Raut was not exaggerating. Nodwin Gaming has announced the BGMI Master Series with a prize pool of INR 1.5 Crore ($192.14K USD) which will be taken to the masses via Star Sports on television. Without further ado, here’s the transcript of our conversation. If you prefer to listen / watch, you can check out the full video interview here.
Q. Nimish this is your crown jewel in the world of esports thus far. Can you tell us what it is you’re working on and why it’s such a big deal?
This has been three or four months in the making now. We are working on the BGMI Master Series, you must have already seen the announcement that Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) esports is going to be on television for the first time. This goes way back to when I came back to India and joined Fnatic. I had a vision to take esports to television the right way, and Akshat (Nodwin Gaming’s Managing Director) believed in the idea with me.
When we got the opportunity to make it happen, we managed to get the right partners, the right set up and the right format - it all kind of fell in place in the last few months. In addition to the television broadcast via Star Sports, this tournament is also going to have massive digital distribution thanks to our partners Glance and Loco. We also have some really credible partners on board. This is going to be shown as a professional sport and a professional tournament with a decent media value to it. So yeah, fingers crossed! Next season when we go back into the market more people are going to want to be a part of this