Imane "Pokimane" Anys, one of Twitch's most successful streamers, announced on Wednesday that she's the co-founder and chief creative officer of RTS, a "talent management and brand consulting firm" for gaming creators. Buried in the announcement is the weirder, more interesting detail that RTS is the very same company that purchased the beloved fighting game tournament EVO with Sony earlier this year.
The RTS website describes EVO as "jointly operated by Sony & RTS," and says "the premier event brings together all elements of the FGC in an annual celebration of the community and competition." RTS itself is a subsidiary of Endeavor, a giant talent agency company that has expanded to running events and financing TV and films. In the last decade Endeavor has purchased Miss Universe and UFC, so the push into esports doesn't seem so out of place.
One other tidbit about Endeavor: its CEO is very famous, very rich Hollywood talent agent Ari Emanuel. Emanuel was the direct inspiration for Jeremy Piven's character Ari Gold on HBO's Entourage, the show I am most ashamed to have ever liked.
RTS has obviously been up and running in some capacity for awhile—the EVO purchase happened back in March—but today's the big coming out party, with Pokimane featured front and center as chief creative officer. "We’re building RTS to be able to provide the support, alleviate the workload, and solve this for creators, developers, and brands. My goal is to take my years of experience and make it accessible to newer creators so they don’t need to go through the process I have endured," she says.
RTS hasn't said anything concrete about the future of EVO or how its co-stewardship with Sony will change the event. But we do know EVO's organizers are planning a return to Vegas in August 2022. Any guesses on Pokimane's go-to Street Fighter?