Tespa is the North American collegiate partner of Activision-Blizzard’s esports system, and we have some sad news for it today. According to a statement on the company website, the collegiate organization will be “retiring the Tespa brand,” and “shifting our branding to focus more on the game franchises that our players are most excited for.” Tespa’s done a lot for the collegiate scene as a support system, so we’re pretty sad to see them go.
Tespa really blew up in 2013, when they had a serious national expansion. Since then, they were a manner of support for many colleges who were trying to get into gaming/esports. The biggest move for them had to be the 2014 partnership with Blizzard. Quite a few esports came to life at the college level thanks to this partnership. Sadly, Tespa’s going to be closing down, according to reports.
Don’t worry though, there will still be collegiate esports for the Activision-Blizzard games; just not under Tespa. There are programs in place for Overwatch, Hearthstone, and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. This will still harm quite a few colleges since the Tespa “Chapter Program” clubs will likely all be closing.
The COVID-19 spread probably has a lot to do with this decision. Or at least, it has to be at least partially the cause. A lot of in-person college events were delayed or completely canceled in order to be safe. This document allegedly reads:
“With the rapid amount of change that has been in effect this year, we’ve taken time to reflect and plan for how we want our collegiate programs to grow in the future.
“The Tespa name and brand has been with us since the beginning, and although we are moving on from this brand, we’re excited for the opportunity to integrate more with our game franchises.”
Tespa’s announcement that they are closing down is a heartbreaking one. The community Discord will likely close, and they will be sharing highlights and milestones on their Twitter starting today. We’ll miss all the events and work they put in to help the esports community at the college level. We can only hope they resurface when the time is right. But for now, we say thank you to Tespa.
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