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The move sees founder, and incumbent CEO, Craig Fletcher move up to Executive Chairman; where he’ll be working closely with a gaming community he’s fostered since 1997, whilst also developing wider opportunities for the Insomnia event brand

August 2, 2022

5 Min Read

[This unedited press release is made available courtesy of Game Developer and its partnership with notable game PR-related resource Games Press]

Player1 Events |

London, UK — August 2, 2022 | Neil Gaisford takes up the Chief Executive Officer’s role with Player1 Events (P1E) on August 15, just in time to experience his first Insomnia Gaming Festival, i69 at Birmingham’s NEC from August 26-29.

The incoming CEO has an impressive CV in the events space, with 20 years at Clarion Events; the last six of which were spent leading the retail technology, furniture, lifestyle and design divisions in the UK and China as managing director.

Neil Gaisford: Esports and video gaming present a truly exciting opportunity for the live events space, so when I heard about the opportunity to join Player1 I jumped at the chance.

“What struck me most was the ambition and passion from the Player1 leadership team. Together with Craig’s deep sector knowledge, Supernova’s growing IP — and my experience in building leading events — we are excited about where we can take Insomnia and how we launch to new audiences beyond the UK.”

Insomnia is the UK’s most influential gaming event, and I’m confident that with this outstanding and experienced team we can continue to expand the event to greater highs and beyond, creating incredible new live gaming experiences and esports tournaments for fans and players everywhere.”

Craig Fletcher’s ascension to Executive Chairman will afford him a dual role: one where he’s able to spend more time reengaging with a community he’s known ever since founding the Insomnia Festivals and P1E predecessor, Multiplay. But also one that allows him greater focus on corporate development and solving for tomorrow. Craig also continues to work closely with Supernova — a private equity firm focused on discovering and developing the untapped potential of independent game studios and IPs across the globe.

Craig Fletcher: "When I joined Supernova, it was to save Insomnia for a community that calls it home. It means so much for those attending to come together, surrounded by like-minded people. Now that we have Player1 and Insomnia back on their feet, it's time to bring in a big hitter with the experience to drive it to the next level. As exec chair, I'll be focusing on helping guide the strategy, being an ambassador for the business, and the 'keeper of the faith' for the community. I'll be on the lookout for wider opportunities to bring gamers together and share our passion for play.

“I'm really looking forward to working closely with Neil and, with his tremendous experience, taking the events to new heights and many new locations. With the first event since COVID back in April being a relaunch, i69 is set to really showcase us as being back and firing on all cylinders.”

Insomnia Gaming Festival i69: August 26-29, Birmingham NEC

Alongside our long-standing partnerships with the likes of Overclockers, Sneak Energy and Endpoint Esports, this year we'll be welcoming Intel to the Insomnia Gaming Festival Expo; bringing with them a whole host of PC gaming technology — powering mini-tournaments, fastest lap competitions, the hottest games, and more.

i69 sees the return of the Creator Tavern, after a successful launch at i68. In a similar way to ‘finally going to the pub after months of Zoom calls’ i68 offered a community space for gamers to meet again (after many months of nothing but online gaming). Now i69 aims to do the same — only this time, bigger and better — accommodating all of our communities in a space where they can connect and create amazing experiences together.

We will also roll out "The Battle Royale Zone featuring Fall Guys", a 60-seater arena for gamers to play full games of Fall Guys all in the

same space; hopefully replete with some suitably creative outfits. On which note, our Cosplay Masquerade and Championship shows are now among the largest cosplay showcases in the UK.

i69 still includes our ever-popular meet & greets, with creators such as Seapeekay, Dangthatsalongname and the chaotic cast of the live D&D show Session Zero.


About Player1 Events

After 21 years of delivering events under the Multiplay name, in 2018, the company rebranded and became Player1 Events to closer align the brand with the community of gamers it is dedicated to. With a new name and a new look, Player1 Events expanded the business to include internationally licensed events, white-label esports events, equipment rentals and contracted gaming experiential marketing events as well as continuing to deliver their flagship community event; Insomnia Gaming Festival.

For more information, visit www.player1events.com

About Insomnia Gaming Festival

Founded in 1999, the Insomnia Gaming Festival originated as the i-Series; a small LAN (Local Area Network) event where gamers could come together and play together as part of one community. Today, our focus on bringing the community together is just as strong as we welcome 40,000 visitors to Insomnia and our LAN parties have grown to the biggest in the UK, seeing 2,800 gamers in one space for a weekend of non-stop, 24-hour gaming.

Expanding from the LAN, Insomnia is a diverse show for gamers of all backgrounds, identities and ethnicities to come together and celebrate everything that we love about video games and popular culture. From brand new and upcoming releases, cosplay, Indie games, tabletop games, gaming content creators and much more, Insomnia Gaming Festival isn't just a gaming expo, it’s a celebration of all things gaming.

For more information, visit www.insomniagamingfestival.com or /IGFestUK on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

Supernova Capital is a private equity firm focused on realising the untapped potential of independent game development studios and their IPs across the globe since 2017. Its co-founders, Paul Wedgwood and Mark Morris, were the key forces behind award-winning London-based studio, Splash Damage; the pair has dozens of #1 hit games to their names and hundreds of awards and nominations. As such, Supernova draws upon decades of experience and industry credibility in the ‘AAA’ game development space and beyond. Supernova seeks to create a network of talented, independent creators, offering them the capital and high level support necessary to establish long-term stability in an unpredictable industry, all while allowing them to maintain their creative freedom and independence.

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