Add “esports mogul” to the list of David Beckham’s business interests.
The former soccer star, a fashion icon, product endorser and owner of Major League Soccer’s Inter Miami, is now a co-owner of the Guild Esports. The London-based startup made the announcement Thursday.
Guild Esports stated its plans to develop teams in EA Sports FIFA, Rocket League and Fortnite using an academy model.
“We have built an experienced management team and I am proud to have David Beckham as co-owner in this venture,” Guild Esports executive chairman Carleton Curtis said in a statement. “His professionalism and deep experience of developing high-functioning sports teams aligns with our core strategy of building the best in class esports teams.
“At Guild Esports, David will be instrumental in helping shape the coaching program implemented at our academies and we welcome his valuable mentoring as well as the inspiration he gives the younger generation of athletes. Esports is already one of the most popular spectator sports on Earth and will continue to grow globally as excitement, accessibility and knowledge of the sector soars. Guild looks forward to playing a big role in the future of this growing community.”
Beckham said in a statement, “Throughout my career I’ve been lucky enough to work with players at the top of their game, and I’ve seen first-hand the passion and dedication it takes to play at that level. I know that determination lives in our esports athletes today and at Guild we have a vision to set a new standard, supporting these players into the future.
“We are committed to nurturing and encouraging youth talent through our academy systems and I am looking forward to helping our Guild Esports team grow.”
Beckham reportedly bought into the company through his DB Ventures investment arm. Blue Star Capital was also announced as an investor in Guild Esports, which stated that it plans to field its first teams this autumn.
Curtis comes to Guild Esports from Activision Blizzard, where he was a vice president of programming the past three years. Before that, he was Red Bulls’ esports program director following a stint in Fox Sports’ digital department.
—Field Level Media