Gamescom Latam will combine BIG Festival and Gamescom

In a big stride toward enriching Latin America’s gaming landscape, Gamescom and the BIG Festival will get together to create a brand new event: Gamescom Latam.

Scheduled to unfold in São Paulo, Brazil, from June 26 to June 30, 2024, this inaugural edition promises an immersive gaming experience for aficionados and industry stalwarts across Brazil, Latin America, and beyond.

The announcement of Gamescom Latam (which the groups spell gamescom latam) heralds an amalgamation of two formidable gaming giants—Gamescom and BIG Festival, the latter known for hosting over 50,000 attendees in 2023. This joint venture aims to elevate the gaming industry by amalgamating the prowess of Gamescom’s global stature and BIG Festival’s regional dominance into an unparalleled business and launch platform.

“The creation of Gamescom Latam corresponds to the recognition by the world’s largest gaming companies of Brazil and Latin America as central territories,” said Gustavo Steinberg, CEO of BIG
Festival and now of Gamescom Latam, in a statement. “It is also an important alignment between two events that already had the same nature: for both Gamescom and BIG Festival, celebrating the world of games and gaming communities by showing the newest releases, the best games and so much more to fans. It is for this reason that BIG Festival will continue to exist as one of the areas within Gamescom Latam, attracting the best independent games from around the world as we have been doing since 2012, but now within a platform with much expanded visibility.”


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Why it happened

Gustavo Steinberg is CEO of BIG and CEO of Gamescom Latam.

In an email to GamesBeat, Steinberg said the BIG Festival will continue to exist as a standalone initiative, but its main event will happen inside Gamescom Latam, as one of the content areas of the bigger event. It will continue to be the indie games competition and the awards ceremony. We will continue to select the best games in the world and show them at the Gamescom Latam BIG Festival area, but now with greater global visibility.”

As for why the BIG Festival took this step, Steinberg said. “It was the logical continuation of what we have been doing for the past years. Just like the joint venture with the Omelete Company was essential to expand the B2C area, without compromising the B2B area, the joint venture with gamescom is the next step in the expansion of the event for the whole region: Latam has officially become a must go destination for the industry, hosting the biggest event of its kind in the Americas, including North America. It is also very important in this decision that game, the German Association of the Games Industry, congregates both indie studios and major publishers. It is a combination we very much believe in and find very strategic.”

Key partners

The crowd at Opening Night Live at Gamescom.
The crowd at Opening Night Live at Gamescom.

The collaboration is the result of a partnership among industry titans including Koelnmesse, renowned for organizing Gamescom in Cologne, Germany — always a contender for the world’s largest gaming event — and Gamescom Asia in Singapore.

And Game, the German Games Industry Association, wants to foster collaboration across the gaming ecosystem through the partnership with the BIG Festival, the flagship gaming fiesta in Latin America.

Another partner is Omelete Company, a pioneering force in Brazil’s pop culture, orchestrates major events like CCXP (the world’s largest Comic Con) and Game XP (the globe’s biggest game park).

BIG Festival drew 50,000 in 2023.

“We are very much looking forward to bringing Gamescom to Brazil together with our partners,” said Felix Falk, managing director of Game, the German Games Industry Association, in a statement. “Latin America and especially Brazil are exciting emerging markets: the community and the games industry are growing strongly, and Gamescom Latam is set to become the home for both plus many guests from all over the world. Because gamescom 2023 in Cologne clearly showed that: The international games industry needs events. We are happy to have an unique and powerful set of partners to make this happen.”

Pierre Mantovani, CEO of Omelete Company, said in a statement that his company shared the strategic commitment to fortify the gaming market. He emphasized the event’s significance as the region’s largest gaming spectacle, aimed at fostering brand connections and strategic plans.

The event also garners strategic support from São Paulo’s state government, which supports gaming as a cultural and economic force.

BIG Festival is in Sao Paolo, as will be Gamescom Latam.

Gamescom Latam will be a platform offering fans access to the latest gaming novelties, trends, and shows, facilitating a shared gaming celebration.

The BIG Festival, which has been held in São Paulo since 2012, will be included inside it as a competitive arena for independent game developers worldwide, fostering networking opportunities and game showcases.

The event will feature industry networking, making the event a pivotal space for global gaming professionals to forge collaborations, share insights, and unveil new ventures.

And it will highlight São Paulo as a global gaming hub during the event, enticing participants from around the world.

“With our events abroad, we accompany our customers to the most important growth markets worldwide,” said Koelnmesse CEO Gerald Böse, in a statement. “After gamescom asia, gamescom latam is by no means a competitor to the successful original event in Cologne, but rather an ideal addition to our international portfolio.”

The share of international business in Koelnmesse’s turnover is in the double-digit range and has been growing continuously for years.

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