Vireo.pro continues their existence following a mass shakeup in leadership
Following the story we ran yesterday evening, additional information has come to our attention through speaking with staff members of Vireo.pro. After previously offering no comment preceding the release of our original story, members of the Vireo.pro wanted to clarify the team's position and clear up some "misinformation" regarding our story.
I personally don’t blame you for this story, I actually think it’s well researched given what was actually out there.— Colin (@Life0fColin) January 5, 2019
I’m happy to clarify whatever you like if you’ll talk to me, though. There’s a little bit of misinformation there.
At this time Vireo.pro is expected to continue operation under new management as Colin Chan, CEO of Vireo.pro plans on taking a step back to resolve personal issues and to allow for new management to properly incorporate the organization.
In discussing last night's whirlwind changes with Colin Chan and the team's CS:GO manager Drew "DrewSkii" Jones, they both admitted that the departure of both the COO and CFO under such a short period of time was a massive and unexpected surprise. Although both members had discussed stepping down at some point in the future, it was generally agreed upon that they would stay on until Chan was able to properly step down and bring in new leadership, or until they decided to continue on with the project.
When the issue of finances was brought up, Chan and DrewSkii both agreed that the loss of their primary investor damaged the company's bottom-line for 2018, however they were confident that Vireo.pro would be able to continue operation into 2019 under a tighter budget while also bringing in new investors and sources of revenue.
As for the “shady investor” Chan brought up in his Twitlonger, he clarified that although it was a legitimate investor, he believes that the deal was shady as he used that fact that they didn't know anything about the esports ecosystem to paint a picture of a great “return-on-investment” (ROI) and popularity in order to acquire a larger investment. This is what he believes to be the ultimate reason they pulled out, as the reality of the often-tumultuous esports ecosystem set in.
In reaction to Myra "pharos" Davis' tweet stating that the organization ran on only $8,000 a month, Colin retorted stating that the $8,000 figure was only a conservative guideline and the organization on average was able to spend upwards of $10-$20k should the need arise on a month-by-month basis. Additionally, as pharos left with the organization's League of Legends team, Chan argued that this took a massive financial burden off the organization's shoulders allowing him to focus on CS:GO, the esport he is most passionate about.
To give a bit more insight into Vireo as well. We ran on an $8000 budget. $2700 went to players, $1575 went to staff, and the rest was event funding. I never saw a cent of any of that money as me and the other owners agreed to not take salary.— Myra (@Myrapie_) January 4, 2019
When the topic of Colin’s age was brought up, with DrewSkii and the team's Battalion 1944 manager, they both claimed they did not know Colin was 16 until they learned of it yesterday, following the release of pharo's Twitlonger. Dust2.us has learned that the organization was able to circumvent this issue by having the majority of contracts signed with one of the organization's other board members or with the various team managers, although they ended up being more enforced on “good-faith” as opposed to being legally-binding.
As for the organization's CS:GO team, Chan claims that every single player and coach were paid what they were due up until their contracts expired on December 31st. As it stands, he hopes that the players will re-sign with Vireo.pro as he hopes to continue building the project. However, he notes that because they are currently free agents, and if Vireo.pro's finances do ever come into question, he has prepared plans for interested parties to acquire the team.
Although the new management structure has not been finalized for Vireo.pro, Dust2.us has learned that Andrew “iMPALER” Coons, the organization’s Battalion 1944 manager, has been pegged as a potential replacement for Chan, although all parties confirmed that any potential changes are still in early stages.
In conclusion, Vireo.pro will continue on under new management, and although Chan does not want to completely step back, he admitted that the organization would be best served by a CEO who didn't have to dodge and weave around the legal implications of being a minor. Additionally, he said the organization needs a leader who can manage the vast and often stressful duties of a startup, along with managing communication between a large of number of people, an issue he argued as the reason the former COO and CFO released contradictory statements that signaled the organization had disbanded or was in dire straits.