Manny Pacquiao launches esports org with Filipino streamers
The organization will focus primarily on promoting local streamers, hosting competitive events, and charity work.
Legendary professional boxer and current Philippine presidential candidate Manny Pacquiao just launched Team Pacquiao GG, an esports org dedicated to promoting homegrown Filipino gaming talents. The incumbent senator personally led the launch event, at a venue in Parañaque City, Philippines.
Team Pacquiao GG will be a joint venture between Pacquiao himself and London-based esports organization Veloce. According to Veloce chief development officer Ryan Tveter, this project is part of Veloce's expansion into Southeast Asia.
At the event, Pacquiao also introduced the first five talents signed to Team Pacquiao GG. Elyson "Ghost Wrecker" Caranza, Kimberlee "Superkimbie" Arcillas, Koleen "Een" Mercado, Gian Lois "GLOCO" Concepcion, and Shin Boo "Sh1nboo" Ponferrada will all be part of the initial batch of content creators.
Photo by Team Pacquiao GG
These five names are popular in the Filipino gaming scene, for titles such as Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, Call of Duty Mobile, League of Legends: Wild Rift, and Valorant. Interestingly, it doesn't seem like Team Pacquiao GG will be featuring any pro level players on their roster, instead focusing entirely on streamers.
Whether or not this will change in the future has yet to be seen, as well as whether or not Team Pacquiao GG will eventually field professional teams.
From Gloves to Mice
Manny Pacquiao is therefore venturing into esports for the first time in his career with Team Pacquiao GG — a move which more or less came as a surprise, even to Manny's son Michael.
"I was shocked. [Shocked because] my dad usually doesn't talk about games. [I was like] 'What?' So that was a nice [thing to hear]," said Michael Pacquiao, in a quote given to Philippine news network ABS-CBN.
Aside from its main focus on content creation, Team Pacquiao GG will also venture into hosting events and gaming competitions, as well as charity work. Despite the latter, however, critics have many times in the past blasted Pacquiao over his stances on homosexuality, same-sex marriages, and his support of incumbent president Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs.
Team Pacquiao GG launches at 11:00 am ET on Saturday, December 4th. The organization also launched a website earlier today.
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Patrick has been around in the esports industry since 2013, having started off covering both StarCraft II and Dota 2. He still plays the latter to this day, with 15 years of experience and counting. In his spare time, he plays as a lovely catgirl in Final Fantasy XIV.