Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE), the owners of several team and venue properties in the Washington DC area, has installed Grant Paranjape as its director of esports business and team operations.
The former Splyce Inc executive will oversee strategy and business initiatives for MSE’s esports operations, including its entry into the forthcoming NBA 2K eLeague.
He will report to Zach Leonsis, the general manager of Monumental Sports Network and the son of MSE founder and chief executive Ted Leonsis.
Paranjape’s appointment sees MSE, whose team portfolio includes the Washington Wizards basketball team, become one of the first ownership groups in the NBA to hire a full-time director for its esports outfit, which is one of 17 confirmed to feature in the inaugural NBA 2K eLeague next year.
Last year the Houston Rockets became the first sports franchise in North America to hire an executive specialising in eSports, installing 25-year-old Yale graduate Sebastian Park.
“We are thrilled to welcome Grant to our team here at Monumental,” said Zach Leonsis. “We see esports as the next great frontier in sports and entertainment - and a crucial part of our larger strategic efforts to engage younger fans.
“With his experience and his comprehensive understanding of the esports landscape, Grant will play a big part in helping us capitalise on our work to engage this critically important demographic.”
As well as entering a team into the NBA 2K eLeague, MSE also owns a stake in aXiomatic, the company that owns the Team Liquid esports team.
“I am thrilled to join the team here at Monumental Sports and Entertainment,” said Paranjape, who previously oversaw strategic business initiatives for Splyce Inc.
“MSE has been a visionary in working to develop a robust esports operation and I’m looking forward to working with the team here to further expand our esports practice.
“With a history of innovation and technological excellence, MSE’s focus on esports will allow our team to provide fans with industry leading content and an exceptional viewing experience.”