Making it in Esports: MAD Lions Co-Founder, Jorge Schnura Becerro
This article is part of Gamer One’s new Making it in Esports series which interviews top industry team owners to learn more about their journey and to share the lessons they’ve learned along the way.
The following is a recent interview we had with Jorge Schnura Becerro, co-founder of MAD Lions.
1. What was your journey like that eventually led to owning your own team?
JS: I was following the industry’s development for around one year and it became clear to me that this would be the form of competitive entertainment of the future. Traditional sports were designed to be played, not to be watched. They became a form of entertainment by accident. Esports are based on games designed to be watched and can evolve to stay entertaining for years. This, added to the metrics and to the opportunity of becoming Madrid’s team, a city with a lot of brand equity in sports, showed an opportunity we couldn’t miss.
2. What’s an average workday look like for you?
JS: Anything but average. In a rapidly growing and changing industry every day is different. New challenges and opportunities arise every day to which we have to be quick to react if we want to keep the lead. The fun part of my job is that I get to work with all of the MAD Lions teams: partnerships, marketing, content, finance, operations, etc. and I get to think of new strategies and business opportunities we may want to explore.
3. What advice would you have for aspiring professional gamers?
JS: I’d give three pieces of advice and all of them have to do with how you invest your time.
You need to commit all your time during a few years to it if you want to make the most out of it. As a player, for as long as you stay competitive, you’ll earn more money than in a normal job. It is important that you use those years where you’re performing the best to get the most out of it and that you don’t spend your money as if you’d always be making that kind of earnings.
In order not to burn out and stretch that time, dedicate some time to your physical and mental wellbeing by going to the gym, getting a nutritionist and having a mental coach help you out.
Last but not least, you need to make sure you’ll be able to work after you retire. For this you can either focus on becoming a strong streamer/YouTuber and leverage the fanbase you’ve created as a player or you can aim for an industry job. In both cases, it is important to study a degree or to be constantly learning through online courses. If you don’t do this, your player savings will run out one day and you’ll regret not having done it.
4. What excites you most about the future of the esports industry?
JS: What excites me is that all clubs nowadays say they want to be the Real Madrid or the Dallas Cowboys of esports, whereas in some years it will be them who will aspire to be as big as the largest esports organizations. This will be the new normal and it will be more mainstream, thanks to its accessibility than any other sport has ever been.