By Isaac Chandler
February 13, 2020
Teams in Asia may be on edge right now. The spreading coronavirus has already seen two leagues postpone their seasons as they wait for it to pass. However, that hasn’t stopped teams in Southeast Asia from making some pretty significant announcements for themselves.
Lowkey Esports, a Worlds Play-In from the VCS, unveiled today that their team in the league and spot got sold to famed European org Team Secret ahead of the third week of competition.
The move, announced on Team Secret’s Twitter, follows several months of rumors around Lowkey and their inability to pay players and staff across all their teams. This resulted in them shuttering most of their departments last year, leading to fears the team may drop out of the VCS at any moment.
The move saved the team’s spot in the league. However, it does come as a surprise given Team Secret is a European org with no prior history in the region. It could be an indication that the team is pivoting towards building its brand in Vietnam and the rest of Southeast Asia. Either way, Secret is a massive org. Having them involved with the scene is nothing but beneficial for all parties involved.
While the VCS was celebrating the addition of Team Secret, the PCS was dealing with a crisis. Taiwanese team G-Rex abruptly announced through their parent company that, due to an uncertain economic environment, the team would drop out of the PCS, effective immediately.
The news took the league and team by shock according to English caster Opal. He revealed that the league was already looking to acquire a new partner to take over G-Rex’s spot, though noted that, “the league’s main priority is to the former player’s welfare during spring.”
What exact economic uncertainty G-Rex was referring to in their announcement is unknown. However, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to assume it’s due to rising costs across the industry. This led to many teams in the past year to close doors and move on as it has only gotten more and more lucrative.