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A London Olympic Legacy esports cluster

Arena Consultancy was approached by Gavin Poole, CEO of Here East, the innovation tech hub in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London to devise and deliver a feasibility report addressing the opportunities that the development of an esports cluster might provide for the Park. In conjunction with the London Legacy Development Corporation, Here East wanted Arena Consultancy as experts in the esports sector to interview community stakeholders across the Park to understand how the development of such a cluster might inspire youth networks across the four host boroughs and provide pathways to learning and fresh opportunities. Arena Consultancy wanted to understand how the various commercial stakeholders at the Park thought about the concept of developing an esports cluster and how that might realise new opportunities from hosting tournaments across the various Olympic legacy sports facilities to provide vocation opportunities for those students graduating with degrees in esports from ‘residential onsite’ universities including Staffordshire and Loughborough.

The report allowed Arena to bring their expert knowledge of the games sector to the research. We were able to draw comparisons with other cluster formations in the world from Scandinavia to Asia and look at lessons learnt that could be applied to London. Through comparative analysis and empirical studies, we were able to make various recommendations alongside next steps which formed a key chapter in the report with time frames for development and execution. With the strong games industry network that Arena Consultancy has developed, whilst opportunities were identified, we were able to go a step further and introduce Park stakeholders to external companies to provide pathways to realising these goals. Some of these goals are being realised and some span longer-term horizons. We look forward to seeing how the Park evolves in the next weeks, months and years.

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