Reliance Jio is set to enter e-sports. While the company is yet to make any official announcement, it has hired ex-Riot Games India boss Anurag Khurana as its e-sports head. He is a veteran in the Indian games industry, having worked on one of India’s first PC games, BattleDust: The Championship, at Paradox Studios (not to be confused with the European publisher Paradox) as well as having worked at Guitar Hero developer RedOctane. News of Reliance Jio's entry into the e-sports space comes after months of speculation among those within the industry, some of whom have informed Gadgets 360 that the Internet giant has its sights set on capitalising on this section of gaming, as well as tipping us off on the change to Khurana's LinkedIn profile which now reads 'Head of e-sports at Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd'.
It will be interesting to see how Jio tackles the space. Considering that competitive mobile titles like Clash Royale and PUBG Mobile have a dedicated following in addition to traditional e-sports fare like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Dota 2, Reliance could very well open up e-sports to a larger audience. We'd speculate that it may amplify what's already been done by existing entities or take them on with its own leagues, talent, and tournaments albeit backed up by Jio's tremendous reach. E-sports could also very well be a way for Jio to increase the reach of its Jio Gigafiber service.
Nonetheless, with mobile game companies like Nazara entrenched in e-sports and the likes of Ucypher being present as a reality TV take on it as well as hardware makers such as Nvidia making a more concerted effort in the space, the timing could be right for Reliance Jio to capitalise on the current surge of activity.
If you're a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360's gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week's episode by hitting the play button below.