Chinese esports organization Newbee is facing accusations from two former Newbee Fortnite players, Hu “xMende” Wenchen and Li “XXM” Ming, who claim the organization did not pay them the $100K USD prize money from the 2019 Fortnite World Cup.
According to a statement made by Ming on his social media Weibo, the tournament organizer Epic Games sent Newbee the prize money eight months ago, but he and Hu did not receive their payment.
The Esports Observer tried to reach out to Newbee, but contacts said they have left the organization and declined to comment. TEO also reached out to Ming for more information, but has not received a response.
Two months ago the organization faced multiple match-fixing accusations from the China Dota 2 Association (CDA), and all team players were given life-long bans to Dota 2 competitions hosted by CDA, Imba TV, and Mars Media.
On May 28 Newbee announced on Weibo that the team was dissatisfied with the judgment, and asked CDA to provide related evidence of match-fixing. Since then, Newbee has not posted any content on Weibo.
Sources close to Newbee told The Esports Observer that the organization is facing financial problems. “They are quite messed up…” a source told The Esports Observer.
Newbee was at one time one of the best performing Dota 2 teams in the world. The organization won the 2014 edition of Dota 2’s The International (TI), and placed second in 2017.
The organization also used to compete in the League of Legends Pro League (LPL) between 2015-2017. After the LPL switched to a franchising model and canceled promotion and relegation, Newbee left the league and sold its team to FunPlus Phoenix. The team later became one of the best Chinese League of Legends teams in the world, winning the 2019 League of Legends World Championship in Paris. FPX has non-endemic brand partnerships with BMW and OPPO. Three of six team members of the 2019 championship team are former Newbee players, including Liu “Crisp” Qingsong, Lin “lwx” Weixiang, and Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang.
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