"Without our fans, we're nothing."
Passion’s an overused word these days but it is, undeniably, what you get with Ninjas in Pyjamas.
After all, the professional gamers that make up their esports teams have turned their passion into a successful business.
But it’s not just the team that brings that energy. Check out how their supporters react to a high stakes victory in the video below.
"We're proud to be one of the oldest, largest and most prolific competitive esports teams in the world," declares their website.
But they're a business too – and every business racks up expenses.
“When I came in, merchandising was not even considered part of the plan,” says Head of Merchandising and Apparel Laura Rojas Uribe. “And then slowly but surely, it has been growing and growing to a point that is significant.”
It makes sense – like football fans wearing their team’s jersey, NIP supporters want to show their loyalty. They also want to get their hands on the kit that could help them play as well as the pros.
“If you could manage to find the perfect chair and the perfect apparel that will help your players and potentially the fans to be better gamers, you're also going to elevate the level of people playing,” says Laura.
But if you’re going to put your brand on some merch, you want to make sure the quality is as good as your team’s aim, right?
Laura: “I have a lot of costs… When I have to get a sample of a product, sometimes they don't require payment – but sometimes they do.”
Fast reflexes count in games, but in business too.
“A normal bank transfer takes from three to five days, so it actually delays the whole of my production time.
“Pleo changed my life. It made it so much easier to do a lot of the things that I do.
“It’s very, very straightforward. Make the payment and it directly tells you: Please take a picture. Don't lose the receipt!
“Before, I cannot stress enough how many [receipts] I have lost!”