Pokimane announced as co-founder of talent management company RTS Gaming
Pokimane, the popular Twitch gaming livestream, has announced a new entrepreneurial gig: She is the co-founder and chief creative officer of RTS, a talent management and brand consulting company spun off from the esports business of Endeavour.
Imane Anys, known as Pokimane among her more than 30 million online followers, said Variety that RTS was formed to solve the burning business issues faced by game creators – namely, to strike brand deals that value them fairly and represent them authentically.
In gaming and esports, she said, “there are too many examples of people being abused, accepting contracts with unfair compensation and crunchy deals.” Pokimane, who has been “through the wringer” in similar experiences, said she provides a creator-focused perspective as part of the RTS team.
Sometimes creators just don’t know what they’re worth or don’t know how to best commit to the right kinds of brand deals, according to Pokimane. “Unfortunately, due to the speed of live streaming and internet culture, people tend to make short-term rather than long-term decisions,” she said.
Pokimane is replaced by UTA. But, she said, talent agencies and agents often have an incentive to maximize deal flow. RTS, on the other hand, does not take a percentage cut from transactional transactions. She didn’t go into detail about how the company’s agreements with creators are put together, but she said the agreements have “a mutually beneficial structure that binds us together for the long term. “.
“The reason I wanted to help create RTS was that I wanted an infrastructure in place with managers who care about [gaming creators’] long-term careers,” Pokimane said. “I wanted to create an environment where we care about every aspect of the brand and the well-being of the creator.”
The RTS founding team includes CEO Stuart Saw – who was previously Endeavor’s SVP of esports and former chief strategy officer for Twitch – as well as COO Kim Phan (formerly at Blizzard and Endeavour) , VP of Talent Management Sue Lee (formerly at Twitch, where she served as Pokimane’s account manager), and VP of Sales and Partnerships Jason Scorrano (former head of PAX and Turner Sports). Los Angeles-based RTS currently has 10 employees.
RTS (a nod to the “Real Time Strategy” game genre) is funded by its founders, as well as outside investors Endeavor and Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin. The company’s advisory board, which includes Lin, Brian Corrigan, head of Americas for PUBG, and Karen Brodkin, executive vice president of content strategy and partnerships at Endeavour.
Pokimane live streams have featured games such as “Fortnite”, “Valorant”, “League of Legends”, and “Among Us”. She is Twitch’s top female creator with 8.3 million followers. She is also a founding member of OfflineTV, an online social entertainment group of content creators, and creator of the UCI esports scholarship.
Asked about Twitch’s massive data breach earlier this month, Pokimane said it “felt like an eternity. The silver lining to that was seeing creators and fans memorize everything.
Pokimane and Stuart Saw started discussing issues facing game streamers in the industry about a year ago, which eventually led to her partnering with RTS. Saw, in a statement, said Pokimane “has such a keen eye on the business, which will be a huge asset to creators and brands who really want to make a long-term difference.”
RTS’s client list, in addition to Pokimane, includes Epic Games’ “Fortnite World Cup” and Facebook. The company (rts.gg) also owns and operates with Sony the Evolution Championship Series (aka Evo), one of the oldest esports events with roots dating back to 1996.