IESF appoints member of Saudi Arabian royal family as new President

Yet another deep connection between esports and the Saudi Arabian authoritarian monarchy.

Prince Faisal bin Bandar Al Saud will fill Vlad Marinescu's role as President, as the latter handed his resignation letter today, citing "the evolving demands to serve the global esports community", according to the International Esports Federation.

Prince Faisal was IESF’s Global Vice President previous to Marinescu's stepping down, therefore the Saudi Arabian will be the interim President until the next general assembly, where the new President will be appointed. It's very likely that Prince Faisal will retain the position.

According to Marinescu's resignation letter, which can be found here, Prince Faisal is the "right person to lead [the IESF] to this unity", as he "breathes and bleeds esports". "This unity" is the "recognition by the Olympic Movement and closer relations with Publishers."

Prince Faisal is, at the same time, Vice President of the Global Esports Federation and Chairman of Board of Directors of the Saudi Arabian Esports Federation, now adding the role of interim President of IESF.

Just two days ago, on October 1st, the IESF signed a strategic partnership with the Chinese city of Qingdao, with the aim of developing esports' presence in Asia. This was Marinescu's last action as the President of IESF.

This is a clear example of Saudi Arabian's influence in esports rising even more, as one of the biggest organizations involved in the esports world, ESL FACEIT, is owned by the Savvy Games Group, whose Chairman is the Crown Prince himself, Mohammed bin Salman. Another instance of this is the fact that next year's IESF World Championship is going to be held in Saudi Arabia. In hindsight, this could have been considered as foreshadowing of Prince Faisal's appointment.

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