Logan McLean, Esports Advisor, for NGame Esports talks about shoe brand launches and engagement in esports.
American shoe brand, K-Swiss, announced the first ever esports performance shoe in July designed in partnership with Immortals Gaming Club. Do you think this is a gaming changing moment for esports in terms of where we see the industry in the next 5 -7 years?
There is an incredible amount of clout-chasing in the industry. Top athletes and personalities spend an immense amount of cash on designer wear similar to traditional pro athletes. When I think of the brands that these personalities are wearing, it is Adidas by Gosha. Supreme Off-White. etc., and the merchandise made specifically for them by endemic esports brands.
I am a former professional esports athlete and a traditional athlete. Having played basketball for years, I understand being adequately equipped to compete. Competing in a full game in cross-trainers vs. high tops is very different.
In esports, you are seated for the majority of the competition and not actively using your feet. Other than to stabilize your sitting position, the notion of necessity for a performance sneaker is ridiculous. I believe that K-Swiss has realized that esports is a compelling market trend, and they are seeking to capitalize.
This launch also seems like an excellent opportunity for K-Swiss to capture the market before the competition. The move by K-Swiss could be very similar to how Reebok won the Crossfit movement. Do you think this could elevate K-Swiss into a major esports brand?
K-Swiss has been smart enough to understand the value of the esport market, which makes sense for the launch. However, I would be shocked if they disrupted Adidas and Nike’s hold on the shoe market. This first launch has already seen a negative response from the sneakerhead community.