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Guild Esports PLC

(“Guild Esports”, “Guild”, or “the Company”)

Guild launches all-female Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team

Guild Esports (LSE: GILD), a global teams organisation and lifestyle brand, is pleased to announce the launch today of an all-female team to compete in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (“CS:GO”), the leading team-based first-person shooter, representing the Company’s first entry into the esport.

Guild is leaning on a high-powered all-women team as part of its strategy to encourage greater female participation in esports amid growing interest from brand owners, young fans and players. This is Guild’s second all female team, complementing a similar roster for VALORANT launched in 2021. The VALORANT Guild X team has been a competitive success for the Company since launching, notably winning the VCT Game Changer EMEA Series 3 in October 2022. The new CS:GO team will compete under the name ‘Guild’.

Launched in 2012, Counter-Strike’s audience numbers continue to climb; CS:GO esports tournaments accumulated 450 million hours watched in 2022, an increase of 8.8% on 2021 (source: Esports Charts, 2023). The Company believes its entry into CS:GO will contribute to the growth of its owned audience and open multiple new revenue streams in the long term.

Guild’s CS:GO team comprises Team Captain Kaia “KiKi” Holmen (NO), Marita “Minnie” Sørensen (NO), Thea “Pullox” Evensen (NO), Linnea “Nea” Claesson (SE) and Anna “Ann4” Laurinoviča (LV). The five players are an existing team and have extensive experience competing together. KiKi, Minnie and Pullox will continue to compete for Norway’s national CS:GO team in international tournaments, heightening visibility and increasing audience growth. All five players have signed one-year contracts with the option of extending for an additional year. The team is currently in London at the Sky Guild Gaming Centre, Guild’s state-of-the-art Shoreditch HQ, where they will compete in tournaments together.

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The team will kick off their Guild careers by competing in the ESL Impact Circuit (“ESL Impact”), a women-only CS:GO League with a combined annual prize pool of US$500,000 (£414,000), run by esports organiser and production company ESL. The tournament was created to provide a competitive environment for the top women’s CS:GO teams as part of ESL’s ‘#GGFORALL’ inclusion and female empowerment campaign. Guild will additionally compete in the ESEA Open, hosted by third-party matchmaker and anti-cheat software developer ESEA. The team is targeting promotion from ESEA’s Open Division to the Intermediate Division by the end of the year.

The Guild CS:GO team joins Guild’s existing teams competing in FIFA, the eponymous football franchise; Fortnite, a hundred-player ‘battle royale’; Rocket League, a vehicle-based football game; and VALORANT, a 5-versus-5 tactical shooter.


Jasmine Skee, CEO of Guild Esports, commented: “This International Women’s Day, we’re delighted to launch a high-flying, all-female team to spearhead our entry into the CS:GO arena. With female participation rapidly growing in many other competitive sports such as football and rugby, we feel this is the right time for us to recruit top talent for CS:GO. It will enable Guild to grow its audience, reach new demographics and continue to provide high-level opportunities for women in the esports space. The team members have experience competing together at the highest levels of competitive CS:GO and will be further inspired by the success of VALORANT Guild X. We’re looking forward to working with them and celebrating their competitive success.”

Guild’s CS:GO team captain KiKi said: “We intend to compete at the highest levels of Counter- Strike and Guild is the perfect place to achieve this. With leading facilities, high-quality coaching staff and a state-of-the-art headquarters, Guild gives us the opportunity to learn and grow as a team in a supportive environment. It’s not just the facilities and coaching – Guild’s long-term commitment to supporting women in esports reassures us that we will be a close cultural fit. We’re excited to bring Guild into CS:GO for the first time and hope to make the whole company proud.”

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