Major NA VALORANT tournament organizer cuts staff amidst continued late payment issues

The layoffs have affected multiple departments.

Tournament organizer and esports events company Nerd Street Games has laid off 25 percent of its staff after informing workers of impending layoffs on Wednesday, Jan. 18, according to sources that spoke to The Esports Advocate.

The Philadelphia-based company, which hosts online and offline events across the country in multiple games, is still in the midst of struggling to pay off money owed to VALORANT players and talent from numerous events during 2022.

Some of the people who have confirmed to be laid off by Nerd Street worked in motion/graphics design, esports operations, and production.

Earlier in the month, Dot Esports reported that several pro players and broadcast talent members had been waiting months for Nerd Street to send payments for events held within and outside of the VALORANT Champions Tour ecosystem. Some people had been waiting over half a year for payment, and some players and organizations are still owed thousands.

When complaints about late payment issues first surfaced last December, Nerd Street CEO John Fazio said the company was doing its best to get everyone paid as soon as possible, citing a small amount of “cash on hand” due to “issues with partners” and the FTX crash. Nerd Street signed a partnership deal with the now-bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange back in February 2022.

Just yesterday, NA VALORANT caster Ethan “Sully” Tran said on Twitter that he’s still not been paid after five months, prompting a handful of other NA VALORANT pros to reply that they too are still awaiting payment. Earlier this month, Fazio told The Esports Advocate that Nerd Street hopes “to have [Fragadelphia] payments all caught up by next months.” He also said they are “working with Riot on a resolution for VCT.”

Riot opted to go with a different organizer in Knights Arena to host the main NA VALORANT competition in 2023.

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