BUSINESS

Budget woes force eSports team Titan to shut down

TAGs: Damien Grust, eSports, Jasmine Solana, Titan

Titan, one of the most notable names in the competitive gaming world, is bidding farewell.

Budget woes force eSports team Titan to shut downThe Singapore-based organization announced on Wednesday that it is closing its doors this year because it is no longer able to continue paying their players or staff.

Damien Grust, founder and chief executive of Titan, posted a farewell message on the company’s website that Titan is “starting 2016 without a budget high enough to keep a CS:GO [Counter-Strike: Global Offensive] team or pay our amazing staff. How profoundly sad.”

The executive, however, left no doubt as to what the company’s core problem was.

According to Grust, things went downhill for Titan in December 2014 when one of its players was banned for cheating. That player was Hovik “KQLY” Tovmassian, who admitted in his Facebook page that he used a third-party cheat in public servers and matchmakings.

There were also accusations that KQLY also used the cheats during LAN events, but the French player denied the claims. Nevertheless, KQLY’s case has damaged Titan’s reputation.

“All the bad press that this brought and the major hit the image of an otherwise respectable brand took, was too much,” Grust said. “Sponsors and partners with whom we were about to sign, understandably backed out of deals, not wanting to be associated with a company that had just been tarnished. Needless to say, our budget for 2015 had gone up in smoke from one day to another.”

The Titan CEO said he tried to keep things going in 2015, even going through as far as reinvesting into the company “to keep the company afloat for at least one more year, believing that we could make it after all.”

“We fought the entire year, trying to secure sponsorships that would enable us to keep a struggling, but great CS:GO team as well as our SMITE team. We also sought advice from agencies and lawyers to maybe even sell shares in the company, or merge with another one. None of these scenarios materialized with any of the potential partners we spoke to,” Grust said.

Despite Titan’s money woes, the organization’s CS:GO and SMITE teams continued to perform. The SMITE team finished second in the world championships for the free-to-play MOBA, while the French-speaking CS:GO team enjoyed an eventful year that saw them hovering around the second tier of global competition.

On Tuesday, Titan announced that has parted ways with its SMITE division after the players decide to “go their separate ways.”

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