RIYADH: Esports technology platform provider Futurous could bring foreign investments to Saudi Arabia, as innovative new generation sports are capable to generate massive footfall and business in a region, said its CEO Philippe Blanchard.
“Imagine you (Saudi Arabia) have the first-ever Federation of cyborgs created through the Futurous games. You have this opportunity to support new initiatives, bringing foreign direct investment, expertise and talents to the nation,” Blanchard told Arab News on the sidelines of the Top CEO Forum.
Blanchard added that he sees Kingdom’s Vision 2030 blueprint and its leadership as a springboard that will propel sports beyond physical activity or an economic driver in the region.
“The crown prince of Saudi Arabia understands that sports are much more than physical activity, economic development, or health factors; sports can serve as a vector for modernizing a nation without becoming too Westernized,” said Blanchard.
Content revolution necessary to meet the expectations of youth
According to Blanchard, revolutionary changes in terms of content in sports are necessary to meet the expectations of the young generation, as classical sports are only attracting people in their mid-ages.
“If we want to engage with youth, we need to have a content revolution. We need to reinvent new ways of doing sports. We need to answer the expectations of youth,” he said.
Competitions aligned with the future
During the interview, Blanchard revealed that Futurous competitions are shaped to meet the necessity of the future.
“In the same team, you have males and females, athletes and power athletes, humans and robots. This is the sense of future. And this is how you can engage with the younger population,” said Blanchard.
Blanchard added that the young population love interaction, and they want to be a direct part of the competition.
He further added, “All our competitions are interactive. The spectators are interacting with the competitors on the field of play. The spectators are no more passive spectators, they become spect-actor. They are part of it.”
Blanchard made it clear that the goal of Futurous is to invent new sports and bring additional values to existing ones.
Bringing Futurous Games to GCC
During the talk, Blanchard revealed that GCC is a promising region for Futurous Games, and added that the company is currently considering Abu Dhabi to start its operations.
Blanchard added that he may possibly relocate the activities and infrastructure they created in Switzerland to Saudi Arabia.
Games of the Future: All you need to know
Blanchard had initially decided to organize the first edition of “Games of the Future” in Russia in 2023. However, the tournament was called off due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis.
The idea was to launch a technological platform designed to link live and virtual sports using its dedicated social network and online video service.
According to a company statement, “Games of the Future” was meant to showcase over 15 high-tech disciplines, including esports, drone racing, mobility, exoskeletons, augmented and virtual reality.
During the talk, he also gave a glimpse of the way in which Fututous is planning to carry out its competition.
“We start with a weekend stretching nine days of competitions. We have five galaxies, the first galaxy is e-sport. The second galaxy is E-motions, which comprises technologies of mobility like drones, sustainable mobility, and autonomous mobility. The third galaxy is robotics and exoskeleton. while the fourth one is augmented reality. The last one is the new sport,” revealed Blanchard.