Ninjas in Pyjamas respond to fifflaren interview

Jul 25 2019 3 min read

Ninjas in Pyjamas respond to fifflaren interview ⚡⚡⚡ Esports and gaming news, analytics, reviews on WePlay! The latest news on WePlay!

In an interview by Richard Lewis, Robin “fifflaren” Johansson accused his old team of not paying him and the other NiP players any money from their tournament wins in 2013. The only tournament they did receive money from during this period was for DreamHack Winter 2013 when the players met the organisers and requested they be paid their winnings directly. 

Between 2012-2013, fifflaren earned himself legendary status when the team achieved an 87-game win streak. He also claimed that the money he received throughout 2013 was 217,909 Swedish Krona (about $23,077.65), which was below minimum wage and before tax deductions. Others wronged by the organisation during this period also spoke up, like Mikail "Maikelele" Bil, putting present NiP management in an awkward situation. However, its present CEO, Hicham Chahine has spoken up to address the situation. 

He confirms that NiP did have a "turbulent past" and a history of mismanagement. However, he made it clear that he and his management team had no hand in the decisions made by NiP prior to June 2016. He shared a little background information to put things into context as well, like how the venture capital & private equity firm, Diglife was involved with NiP at the time. 

The investment company was initially brought in to help financially, with no influence over day to day activities, no access to payment sources, and no part in player contract negotiations, nor knowledge of player circumstances. The team at the time simply created the idea that Diglife was responsible for many of their decisions. 

Shortly after taking over management in 2016, Chahine and his team focused on settling all pending issues, including outstanding payments to players, tax compliance and a review of all legal documents. Structure was put in place to help players better manage their earnings and contracts were adjusted to improve operations. 

Chahine also addressed a situation from 2014 in which Faruk "pita" Pita organised a charity CS:GO tournament called Go4Balkan charity. It raised over €25,000 from 1,800 donations and ads to support victims of the floods in Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Croatia. Questions were later raised regarding where all that money went to and it was eventually revealed that it ended up in a PayPal business account belonging to Stockholm E-sport Productions AB

This company ran NiP's day to day activities but after filing for bankruptcy, it transferred the team to Ninjas in Pyjamas Gaming AB, which Diglife owns a majority of shares in. So when the community suspected foul play regarding the charity's funds, NiP found itself in the center of the controversy. Chahine stated that the PayPal account used "was never created, accessed, or owned by anyone on the current management team of NiP." 

With regard to fifflaren, he claimed the organisation settled all financial obligations to him on September 20, 2016. He went on to say that the team has continued to work with fifflaren during his time at Twitch and it even tried to bring him back to the organisation in 2017. He closes his statement with these words. "We’ll continue to talk openly and honestly with our players and fans about these, and any outstanding issues, but ask that anyone else that feels mistreated by the organization in the past give us a chance to address their concerns."

It is left to see how those close to the situation react to his response, but now that things are out in the open, nothing should remain hidden for long. 

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