Blizzard Entertainment’s Global Esports Director, Kim Phan, announced her decision to leave the company for a new opportunity in a forum post on TL.net last night. During her thirteen-plus years at Blizzard, Phan served in a number of different roles, including as a producer of online technologies such as Battle.net and in the company’s business intelligence division.
In her post, Phan reminisced about her early involvement in Team Liquid’s online community. “I played Brood War casually and tried to play WarCraft III professionally,” she wrote. “I wasn’t good enough to be a pro, so instead I became a team manager and picked up shoutcasting.”
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It’s been a tumultuous period for Blizzard esports. As the company dives into an Overwatch League-style franchise system for the Call of Duty World League, it has cut its monetary support for Heroes of the Storm, instituting a massive wave of layoffs earlier this year. Furthermore, OWL commissioner Nate Nanzer left Blizzard last month in order to help develop Fortnite esports at Epic Games.
Phan made it clear in her post that her decision to leave Blizzard has nothing to do with any grudge she holds against the company—in fact, she still plans to attend BlizzCon this year, this time as a dedicated fan.
“The passion, dedication, and camaraderie surrounding the games we love is infectious,” wrote Phan. “Once you become immersed, you never want to leave.”