ESL announced today the “world’s largest” Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament will be held this August in Cologne’s LANXESS arena for a $250,000 prize pool.
The tournament, from August 22-23, will tie for largest prize pool in CS:GO history along with the previous two DreamHack Winters and last year’s ESL One Cologne. However this year the entire event is being funded from ESL’s own pockets, as opposed to a community contributed prize pool. Ulrich Schulze, Managing Director of Pro Gaming at ESL, suggested that this was proof of the company’s dedication to the game’s growing eSports development.
“We had the honour of hosting two $250,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournaments last year as part of the ESL One esports tour, and this year we plan on stepping it up,” said Schulze. “ESL One Cologne is going to be the largest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event in the world. Taking place in the biggest indoor arena in Germany, we’re sure it’ll be a massive hit for fans from all over.”
The LANXESS arena is Europe’s second largest multifunctional arena, and usually plays home to Cologne’s ice hockey team, Kölner Haie. In August, however, the ice will be replaced by a stage on which 16 of the world’s best CS:GO teams will compete in front of a potential 15,000 live spectators for that quarter-million dollar prize pot.
“We’re very excited to be the first German arena to host an event of this kind and are convinced that Cologne, as both a tourist destination and as a technology capital, is perfectly suited,” said Stefan Löcher, CEO of ARENA Management GmbH. “In co-operation with our partner, ESL, we’re looking forward to host some of the world’s best esports players and their fans come August 2015.”
Ticket sales for the event begin on February 23, through Eventim and other associated ticketing agencies in Germany.