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We've been playing Counter-Strike for 23 years now; throughout the lion's share of the game's existence, there's been at least one top-tier roster going by "Ninjas in Pyjamas". CS:GO has been a wild ride, but many of us remember the chaotic early days of professional 1.6 -- either through being there on stage, knees weak arms heavy from carrying CRTs, or through watching 240p frag movies set to "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor" -- and the past decade looks smooth and neatly organized by comparison.

As we head into the next era of this game that we love, we have re-evaluated how to run our teams at the highest tier. With ever-growing ambitions among players, teams and organizers comes an ever-increasing complexity in managing all aspects of team performance. We are currently fielding three rosters in different parts of the ecosystem -- the demand for a holistic CS performance model covering practice, scouting, mental health and logistics won't be going down. The need for dedicated resources will keep growing.

Therefore, we've chosen the route of appointing a GM -- a general manager, or grandmaster if you prefer -- of the NIP CS division. To NIP history buffs, one name should pop up immediately: THREAT. BjΓΆrn has been with us in one way or another, in various positions and configurations, since 2016. He's certainly been in the scene for as long as most can remember, and we're thrilled to announce that we're putting him in charge of moving us into CS2.

"CS:GO brought Ninjas in Pyjamas back to life about a decade ago; and as we now move into CS2 we are reviewing everything CS at NIP in detail. 2023 has been a challenging year, and learning from and changing what has not been working is pivotal for us in our search for success in CS2. As a result, we will be revamping our CS division. I am therefore thrilled to have BjΓΆrn back, this time as the General Manager of CS at NIP to lead everything Counter-Strike as we enter a new CS-era.”
- Hicham Chahine, CEO, NIP

BjΓΆrn has been working alongside Erik Wendel, Troels Robl and Daniel β€œdjL” Narancic for the past couple of weeks, assessing potential paths forward. That work is ongoing and we are going to double down on CS - both on our main team and with Young Ninjas. We are at this stage not ready to announce anything, nor to give a timeline. However, THREAT will join the inaugural Pyjama Party livestream tonight 28/9 on NIP Twitch at 19:00 CEST to share his thoughts on vision, strategy and direction of our CS operation.

"To be able to come back to NIP and work with all of our CS teams just as we enter a new era in this legendary game, is a dream scenario. I look very much forward to what the future brings and I can’t wait to continue the grind”
- BjΓΆrn Pers, GM of CS, NIP

Along with this appointment, there are further changes to the NIP esports department as a whole. Jonas Gundersen will take on a more strategic role at NIP Group focusing on the commercial arm and esports on group level, and Erik Wendel is taking on the duties of running the esports department as Director of Esports at NIP.

88-0 to kick CS2 off? πŸ€”