ENCE CEO Mika Kuusisto and founder Joona “natu” Leppänen released a video on the official ENCE Youtube channel earlier today, taking the time to explain Aleksi “Aleksib” Virolainen’s transfer to OG and the team’s silence during this period.
According to the organization, ENCE hadn’t wanted to spoil the roster moves of another team, leading to an organizational decision to wait until after OG’s announcement to give context to the situation.
According to Natu and Kuusisto, ENCE management had originally decided to renew the ENCE player’s contracts during the team’s grand finals run at the 2019 Katowice Major. By summer, the organization had offered each player an equal contract. The process was unusually quick, explained Kuusisto, but it was around that time that ENCE hit a snag.
A good snag, but a snag nonetheless.
In the middle of the contract process, ENCE “got an offer to sign suNny to [ENCE’s] roster,” says Kuusisto. Miikka “suNny” Kemppi had been benched by mousesports in early March, and the team had shopped the player around to various teams throughout the CSGO tournament season.
The CEO goes on to say that it would have been a financial risk to sign suNny at that point in the summer, but doesn’t go into detail as to what the risk was. In all likelihood, the mousesport’s player’s buyout was larger than ENCE wanted to pay at the time.
By August, however, either ENCE felt they had to make a change or a lack of interest in suNny caused mousesports to lower his price, because ENCE made the decision to sign the mouz player prior to the Starladder Berlin Major.
Natu said it was a “tricky” situation overall, and that the organization actually consulted with the players over how and when to publish the news that Aleksib would leave the team. According to Natu, announcing the switch prior to the Major was a unanimous decision made between the players and ENCE.
“We wanted to avoid a situation where we possibly get a bad result in these circumstances and then publish about the roster change after the Major,” Natu said.
In other words, ENCE wanted to make sure that fans and viewers knew that it wasn’t Aleksib’s performance at the upcoming StarLadder Berlin Major that led to his removal from the team. Both Natu and Kuusisto praised the ENCE players for their play at the Major, each echoing the sentiment that they handled it like professionals.
The two go on to reveal that OG and ENCE had a deal finalized for Aleksib by October, but the process took longer than expected due to both Aleksib’s own contract talks with OG and OG’s negotiations with the rest of their new CSGO roster.
ENCE had come under fire for staying quiet about Aleksib’s fate, and some fans felt like the team was holding the young player hostage. According to Natu and Kuusisto, they felt it wasn’t their place to reveal what other organizations are doing.
“We don’t report on things which belong to other organizations. We got the chance to report when OG was ready to speak publically,” Kuusisto said.
With Aleksib now officially on the OG roster, ENCE created the video to explain their silence on the matter. But with that over now finished, the organization is looking towards the future.
“2019 will end soon, and there’s one more tournament to be played in Malta. Our team will travel to Malta straight from the bootcamp and 2020 waits around the corner. It will be a big year for us,” Natu said.
ENCE will play its final tournament of 2019 in Malta at the Champions Cup Finals. The tournament starts December 19 and runs through December 22.