According to reporting from eSports.net, PUBG owners Tencent are set to introduce a new franchised eSports tournament to South-east Asia. The information came via now-deleted post by the PUBG Mobile Esports Vietnam Facebook account in which Tencent apparently confirmed that the PUBG Mobile Super League (PMSL) will supersede the previous PMPL (PUBG Mobile Pro-league) SEA Championship.
The new franchise arrangement would allow teams that compete to receive a share of revenue rather than simply receiving a set amount from prizes won or outside sources.
eSports observer Mark Cai commented on the plans by Tencent, comparing them to the turbulent times other companies have been facing. He noted that comparatively, one of the more popular eSports franchises backed by a parent company, the Overwatch League, has been facing scrutiny from participant teams due to shrinking revenue and exorbitant franchising fees. Culminating in potential legal action.
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Cai’s observations bring to light a certain perspective on these rumours. Although yet to be confirmed, as eSports.net noted, Tencent has previously committed to franchising in the region. Thus it’s more likely than not that we’ll see an official announcement in the near future with regards to confirming the PMSL’s existence.
The fact that, as is reported, this league may be more open than other franchised leagues (such as OWL) would also make it much more open to a variety of teams. Which would be both good news for players and allow for a persistent rotation of competitive teams rather than the closed ecosystem companies like Blizzard have fostered.
Whether or not this proposed Super League can expand outside of South-east Asia may be another matter altogether. As eSports.net note that PUBG Mobile is uniquely popular in South-East Asia, with the region already having a dedicated eSports following.
As we’ve noted in previous articles, this is also a further indication, if true, that the mobile eSports scene may be far more resilient than other platforms.