Esports entrepreneur Delane Parnell preps next moves as his company grows – Crain’s Detroit Business

Esports entrepreneur Delane Parnell preps next moves as his company grows – Crain’s Detroit Business

Detroit native Delane Parnell, whose Los Angeles-based esports company has netted more than $100 million in venture capital, will be spending more time at home.


The founder of PlayVS, a growing competitor in the field of esports — that is, competitive video games — has a new business venture that aims to help Black-owned companies grow and create wealth that is taking aim at Detroit brands.

Oh, and he’s also built a house here.

Parnell will be among featured speakers at Detroit Homecoming, an annual event produced by Crain’s Detroit Business that brings Detroit “expats” who have found success in other cities back to their hometown to re-engage and potentially invest in the city (see box at right).

“I’m super excited,” said Parnell, making a name for himself in the tech world after growing up in a home with no Internet access.


The 29-year-old Parnell, a native of the west side of Detroit and graduate of Southfield High who moved to Los Angeles in 2018, has raised $107 million in investment for his 4-year-old esports company.

PlayVS is now sanctioned by high school athletic associations in 24 states, allowing schools to form esports teams and compete for state championships in games such as “Super Smash Bros.” and “Madden NFL 21.”

At the collegiate level, PlayVS operates free, official, national leagues for partnered video-game publishers at schools across the U.S. and Canada.

PlayVS investors include the
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