Global competitive gaming organisation Gen.G has launched the first all-female esports team as part of a new three-year partnership with location-based dating app Bumble.
The new team, known as Gen.G Empowered by Bumble, will consist of gaming influencers and professional women Fortnite players who will be entered in the world’s biggest tournaments.
Bumble’s assets will include jersey logo placement, custom social and digital content and co-hosted events. Gen.G and Bumble also plan to co-develop merchandise for the Fortnite team, which will have a dedicated streaming room at the esports company’s new training facility in Los Angeles.
“We take seriously our opportunity and responsibility to support emerging segments of the esports community, especially by creating and strengthening platforms for women,” said Gen.G chief executive Chris Park. “Within Gen.G and beyond, we are building a platform that reflects and enthusiastically champions the diversity of our global fanbase.
“Bumble's partnership with Gen.G will create more inclusive, supportive environments in which all passionate esports athletes can compete and connect.”
To celebrate the partnership, Bumble has added a ‘gaming’ badge that users of the app will be able to add to their Bumble BFF profiles in order to find other gamers to connect with. The company has also become an official partner of Kristen Valnicek, Gen.G’s head of new gaming initiatives.
“We're trying to support the women who are already building incredible communities in gaming,” added Chelsea Maclin, vice president of marketing at Bumble. “We've built strong communities through Bumble and Gen.G and we're excited to work together to help bring the gamer community together in real life.
“Together with Gen.G, we want to empower women trailblazers, and make it easier for them to connect with their community whether it be through dating, friendship, or networking.”
The move, which marks Bumble’s first in esports, comes after last month’s field of 100 finalists for the Fortnite World Cup did not feature a single female gamer, despite the fact the title’s publisher Epic Games estimates that women make up 35 per cent of Fortnite’s 250 million players.
The announcement also follows the completion of Gen.G’s latest funding round in April, which saw the company secure US$46 million from investors including American movie star Will Smith and Japanese soccer player Keisuke Honda.