Comcast Spectacor, SK Telecom Develop Joint Esports Venture Named T1 Entertainment & Sports
Comcast Spectacor and SK Telecom have launched T1 Entertainment & Sports (T1), a new global esports joint venture that was introduced in February 2019 when the companies reached a memorandum of understanding to create a premier global esports organization. The joint venture, which legally operates as SK Telecom CS T1 Co., Ltd., has received all necessary regulatory approvals and lifts off with a portfolio that includes the ultra-successful SK Telecom T1 League of Legends (LoL) Champions Korea (LCK) team. Now rebranded as T1, the LCK team is currently competing for an unprecedented fourth title in the LoL World Championship. In addition, T1 owns and operates teams in competitive gaming segments that include Fortnite, Dota 2, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), Super Smash Bros., Hearthstone, and Apex Legends.
“The launch of T1 marks an exciting moment for Comcast Spectacor and our partners at SK Telecom,” said Dave Scott, Chairman and CEO, Comcast Spectacor. “T1 immediately becomes one of the premier esports organizations in the world, and we are looking forward to strengthening its presence in this dynamic space as we move forward.”
“SK Telecom has built SK Telecom T1 into the most successful LoL team in history,” said Park Jung-ho, CEO of SK Telecom. “We’re excited to contribute this legacy to form a premier esports organization with Comcast Spectacor to expand globally and grow the business in new directions. This marks a significant step for SK Telecom’s esports business and we are very excited for the future of T1.”
Also, two senior executives have been appointed to lead the joint venture. Joe Marsh, who most recently was Chief Business Officer for Comcast’s Spectacor Gaming division and the Philadelphia Fusion Overwatch League team, has been named CEO of T1, overseeing global operations based in Seoul, Philadelphia and Los Angeles. John Kim, founder of Akshon Media and former CEO of Meta Gaming in Seoul, has been named Chief Operating Officer and is now based in Seoul full time.
“I’m honored to lead T1 as we enter into a promising chapter of growth,” said Marsh. “SK Telecom T1 has a rich history of success and we will build on those successes and celebrate new victories as we expand into new markets. Our portfolio of world-class teams spans the globe, creating more opportunities for our fans to celebrate T1’s gaming culture, content, and players.”
The joint venture combines the strengths of two successful competitive gaming companies and now stands among the premier esports organizations in the world. The SK Telecom T1 LoL team has already won three LoL World Championships and has an established and loyal fan base. The United States and South Korea rank as the largest and third-largest global esports markets, respectively, in this fast-growing space. T1 will expand globally and develop new businesses and revenue streams surrounding competitive gaming culture and lifestyle, content creation, entertainment, and merchandise.
The Philadelphia Fusion Overwatch League franchise is not part of T1 and remains fully owned and operated by Comcast Spectacor.