Tuesday, May 11, 2021

In the Esports Trenches With Call of Duty League Commissioner Johanna Faries

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Get downloaded on what it’s like to lead the league of the most iconic game in esports.

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In 2003, a little game called Call Of Duty was released and since then, the gaming powerhouse has generated more revenue than the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and double that of the box office of Star Wars. In your face, baby Yoda.

That is, by all definitions, freaking insane. And this week’s guest, Johanna Faries, gave us insights into what makes this thing tick. As Call of Duty League Commissioner, Faries has led initiatives that increased CDL viewership up by 23% year-over-year — that’s during the most challenging business year in modern history. Check out all of the incredible events coming up in 2021 here.

Faries is not new to leading companies that are massive cultural forces around the globe. For over a decade, she worked at the NFL in a number of leadership roles spanning marketing, league initiative strategy, fan and business development, partnerships and consumer products. She is passionate about sports, considers herself competitive by nature and is by no means afraid to go big. “I think what drew me to this opportunity is how once-in-a-lifetime it is,” she explains. “To think about what a sports league of the future can look like and be able to design it and work with some of the brightest minds out there.”

Related: The Best Esports Games for 2021 | PCMag

Faries says there is a true entrepreneurial aspect to what the CDL is doing. “So much of this is about ‘may the best ideas win,'” she says. “Let’s mine for ideas not only around the company, but in the community, as well.” Faries relishes the amount of passion that fans and employees have for Call of Duty as she leads the evolution of the brand. “It is really an amazing moment in time for us to cultivate something new while harnessing the legacy and the power of what Call of Duty and Activision Blizzard stand for in order to do it well.”

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