Exactly one year ago, we gave you a preview of coming attractions: in 2018 Paris&Co hit a major landmark, incubating its 1000th startup! Today we’ve gone well beyond that milestone, accompanying more than 1,100 startups in the past 20 years. Paris&Co is proud to present an overview of 2018, highlighting the impact of our 85-person team that supports and mentors these startups on a daily basis.
Today Paris&Co, the economic development and innovation agency of Paris, launched Level 256 – the first esports innovation platform in Europe.
Esports is the competitive practice of electronic games, encompassing every multi-player competition in the world of video games. It’s also one of the biggest cultural phenomena in recent memory: a global market of €900 million today, forecast to reach €3 billion by 2022. In France, a recent poll by Médiamétrie - France Esports estimates there are 5 million esport consumers in 2018, of which 935,000 people play regularly.
To meet the challenges of technological, economic and societal development, and with the support of the City of Paris, Paris&Co launched LEVEL 256 today - the first esport platform in the world.
The name refers to a bug in the Pacman video game that wouldn’t let players go beyond level 256. Since that time, gaming has been continuously evolving and innovating. And the LEVEL 256 program is focused on one main goal: make Paris the European esports capital!
LEVEL 256, a crossroads for networking and exchange
With a mission that goes far beyond just incubating a myriad of national and international startups, LEVEL 256 aims to foster gatherings and exchanges between the major players of esports (SMEs, large corporations, associations, institutional players, amateur and professional teams). Its primary objective is to support and guide them in seeking talents, innovation and investors.
Alongside its founding partners AXA, EDF and FDJ Esport, LEVEL 256 will mentor 11 companies: Pictor innovation, GamersRoom, Gameblr Esports, GameWard, Bequipe, E-Corp, Pantheon, World Gaming Federation, Wezzar, Gozulting, Glory4gamers.
Developing Parisian communities of amateur gamers is a key social inclusion challenge. LEVEL 256 will offer a unique venue in the East of Paris to run training programs, build awareness and promote the practice of esports accessible to all. Esports diversity and access for the disabled are the major focal points of development.
Paris, host to the biggest Esport events
Esports is characterized by global competitions capable of reaching up to 36 million internaut spectators. In November 2019, the City of Paris will welcome one of the most prestigious competitions: the League of Legends World Championship finals!