Joanna Funk

music, gardening and my dog

Bao Pham, Founder, Team Bliss Esports

Bao Pham, Founder, Team Bliss Esports

This is an unexpected Fam story. I met Bao Pham at a recent music video shoot for Eastmode, and I really liked talking with him. He’s got a well-established flower business, and on the side he’s building a enterprise around his passion – esports! So here is something about Bao Pham and his Team Bliss Esports brand.

“I have multiple gaming teams,” Bao explained. “I sponsor my teams, they play and compete under my banner, and I take a cut from their winnings. We’ve been going for a year and have started to get a little bit of traction now. We have members that play from all around Australia.”

Bao brought a really flash car (Bentley Continental Supersports) to the video shoot, and because Eastmode is a collective of Asian hip-hop artists, I wondered if Team Bliss was also predominantly Asian.

“No, actually it’s very, very diverse!” Bao said. “They’re all Aussies, mostly with European backgrounds, I think I only have one Asian guy. The rest of them are Bosnian, Lebanese, or Australians (English descent). Gamers alone, there are about 25 gamers in five teams. Then I have social media managers and graphic designers. I also have a manager who manages each team individually, so he signs them up for all the tournaments and keeps me updated.”

So how do gamers get to be in Team Bliss?

Bao said, “It’s pretty fun! I get to sit at home and watch people play games.”

Generally most of these guys are already playing. So I might have a bit of a talent scout, and watch them play, and I can offer them something to sign with me. Sometimes they approach me as well to sign.

Bao Pham

I don’t know much about gaming, so Bao broke it down for me.

“There are many different games, and every game has its own league and organisers. So what I do is I have multiple teams in different games, and then have them all compete under the one name – Team Bliss.

Team Bliss currently specialises in these games:

  • PUBG – PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds
  • Rocket League
  • Valorant
  • Rainbow Six

Team Bliss is based in Brisbane and Bao has chosen a warehouse location where he plans to set up an esports academy.

This way we can have young talent come through to train and build their skills up. We can build a talent pool of aspiring gamers

Bao Pham

I am definitely going to be at the opening of that! I think Bao mentioned November…

So how did all this come about?

“Honestly? It came about because I met a guy who was a competitive gamer. He opened my eyes to the whole industry. I didn’t know too much about competitive gaming – I knew people competed and played games for money. But I didn’t really know how deep it went.

This kid I knew is really talented at what he does, but he struggled to find a team. He would join a team but it wasn’t a good fit. I got to know him and we became friends over the course of a year. So I suggested, ‘Why don’t I just start an esports organisation?’ At the time, it was pretty low risk. It wasn’t going to cost me much to start something like that. I told him, ‘I can build a team around you. Then you can try and find team players to suit your style, and we’ll go from there.’ So that’s how it started.”

How good is that! I like it! But Bao’s pretty level-headed too.

“Well, I have a wholesale flowers business. That’s the main income (he smiles). Esports is something I’m much more proud of, it’s a passion project for me. But it’s new and could certainly turn into something.

It’s good to have both kinds of work. It keeps you grounded.

Bao Pham

Definitely more from me about this guy soon.

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About Joanna

Joanna is British Australian. Her early career was in financial news in London. That ended in 2008. Joanna moved to Sabah, her parents’ birthplace, where she wrote a blog about musicians, which became a book. Joanna came to Australia in 2012 and started this blog — her second. These days, she writes mostly about music, her garden, and trips to Sabah. Oh, and Wookie the Havanese.

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