Tech Mahindra Joins Hands with GM Viswanathan Anand to Launch Global Chess League

Marketing | February 23, 2021 | News

Tech Mahindra Viswanathan Anand

Indian multinational IT company Tech Mahindra has announced the launch of a phygital (physical and digital) Global Chess League with five-time World Chess Champion and Indian Chess Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand as ‘Mentor, Advisor and Facilitator-in-Chief’.

Technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality will be leveraged to explore innovative ways of promoting the game through interactive platforms to engage a global audience, informed an official statement. Tech Mahindra will act as the architect behind this concept and will provide necessary operational and technological support to execute it.

Anand Mahindra, Chairman, Mahindra Group, said, “Chess still has an incipient and largely untapped potential across the globe. Recently, there has been a surge of interest post the online Chess Olympiad and the enormous popularity of a TV series based on the game. We hope that the creation of a league will harness this resurgence of interest and bring about a renaissance in the world of chess. I am particularly excited about sharing my learnings from founding the Pro Kabaddi league with the team in order to replicate that success on a much larger and global platform.”

Viswanathan Anand said, “Chess is a game that is played by millions around the world.  At this time, a unique opportunity exists to popularize it further and dramatically enhance its visibility through a global league powered by technology.  I am personally happy to partner with a technology provider like Tech Mahindra, whose endorsement and promotion will certainly elevate the sport to a higher level and offer the right platform to popularize chess across the globe. There is a renewed interest in the game of chess and through this unique global league format, we will be able to keep the spirit of chess intact and ensure the right platform is provided to upcoming talent.” 

“Chess has many synergies with the business world, with its emphasis on intellect, strategy and mental rigor. By leveraging Tech Mahindra’s expertise in new age technologies like 5G and Virtual Reality to drive fan engagement and viewership globally, we can truly transform chess into an e-sport. Furthermore, this global chess league will help us create an exceptional and inspirational experience by bringing the game home to global fans,” added CP Gurnani, MD and CEO, Tech Mahindra. 

The stated objectives of the League are to raise the profile of the sport, discover new generations of chess champions, enhance the fan base of the sport and take the sport to new commercial heights.

The final League structure has not been announced but organisers have said it is likely to have eight  franchisee-owned teams from across the world, comprised of professionals, juniors and wildcard entrants. A fantasy league to maximize viewer engagement is also being considered.

Technologies such as 5G, AI, and VR will be leveraged to promote the sport through the phygital global league.

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