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Armageddon Championship Finale to Start In Berlin

The Armageddon Championship Series Finale is set to start in Berlin, Germany. An eventful year of chess rounds up with the most exciting format of them all — Armageddon. Taking place from September 14th to 20th, this high-stakes series will be broadcast across a network of 17 international television channels, making it an event of unparalleled magnitude.

Top-tier chess players, including luminaries such as Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, Humpy Koneru, Richard Rapport, and Jan-Krzysztof Duda, will converge for a seven-day, double-elimination showdown under intense time pressure. The ultimate goal: to secure the coveted Armageddon Championship Title and a substantial €200,000 prize fund.

The journey to the Grand Finale has been marked by hard-fought victories in regional qualifiers and the special Women’s Week. Spectators will be witnessing the action featuring daily matchups consisting of two blitz games (with a three-minute base time and a two-second move increment). In the event of a deadlock, the gripping tension will be resolved through an Armageddon game, wherein White has five minutes and Black has four minutes to make their moves – a format that promises heart-stopping drama.

The Armageddon Championship Series: Grand Finale boasts an unprecedented prize fund that underscores the significance of this chess event, with remarkable rewards for participants: 1st place – 80,000 EUR, 2nd place – 40,000 EUR, 3rd-4th places – 20,000 EUR each, and 5th-8th places – 10,000 EUR each.

An electrifying experience is guaranteed for viewers of the Grand Finale, complete with thrilling battles between women and men, and an array of captivating features. These include real-time tracking of players’ heart rates and expended calories, alongside lightning-fast moves and cutting-edge analysis from GM Simon Williams and WGM Jovanka Houska.

To catch the action, tune in to the World Chess YouTube channel or any of the 17 global television platforms.

For the first few days, the players were divided into pairs as follows:

Day 1:

Gukesh D — Wesley So
Jan-Krzysztof Duda — Sam Shankland

Day 2:

Nodirbek Abdusattorov — Richard Rapport
Humpy Koneru — Bibisara Assaubayeva

The pairings on the upcoming days will be established using the double-elimination system and will be determined by the results of the previous days.

Ilya Merenzon, CEO of World Chess, shared his excitement, stating, “The Armageddon Series reaches its peak. The best male and female chess players will face each other and test themselves under immense time pressure for €200,000 and the Armageddon Championship title. We anticipate thrilling matches and drama akin to a Netflix series, and we invite the audience to immerse themselves in the Armageddon experience and passionately support their favorite players!”

Sandro Cisco, Head of Global Partnerships and Sponsorships at Kaspersky, added: “As steadfast cybersecurity partners of World Chess events, we proudly endorse the innovative Armageddon Championship Series 2023. The Grand Finale is coming, during which the most prominent chess players will face off in a battle where their ability to react quickly and cope with new challenges will be a decisive step on their path towards victory. Swift adaptability and the ability to meet new challenges are the core which these outstanding players share with Kaspersky experts. Chess and cybersecurity both represent the epitome of human intellect, infused knowledge and experience. We are confident this event will provide all the players and viewers with an unforgettable experience, unveiling novel perspectives on the enchanting game of chess.”

Leading partners supporting the Armageddon Championship Series:
Kaspersky as the Official Cybersecurity Partner;
FIDE Online Arena as the Official Gaming Platform;
It.com as the Official Partner.

 2836   8 mo   Armageddon   Events   main feature

World Chess Statement on Transgender Rights and Inclusivity in Chess

At World Chess, we believe in the power of chess to unite people across diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and identities. The recent policy introduced by FIDE concerning transgender players has sparked important conversations within the chess community, and we feel compelled to share our stance on this critical issue.

We stand in support of transgender rights and the inclusion of transgender individuals in the sport of chess. Chess, at its core, is a battle of wits, strategy, and endurance, transcending physical barriers. We think that it is obvious that everyone, regardless of gender identity, deserves the opportunity to compete, grow, and excel in this intellectual sport.

The decision to restrict transgender women from participating in female-only events, pending a lengthy analysis, raises profound concerns about inclusivity and fairness. We acknowledge the complexity of ensuring competitive fairness across all categories of play but emphasize the importance of approaching this challenge with empathy, inclusivity, and respect for individual rights.

We are disheartened by the implications of FIDE’s policy for transgender players, potentially placing them in a position where they must choose between their identity and their passion for chess. This not only contradicts the spirit of inclusivity but also overlooks the mental and emotional well-being of individuals affected by these regulations.

In light of these developments, World Chess commits to:

— Advocating for policies that promote inclusivity and respect for all players, including transgender individuals, in chess tournaments and events worldwide.
— Engaging with transgender players, experts, and advocacy groups to ensure that their voices and needs are considered in the development of policies affecting their participation in chess.
— Supporting initiatives and research aimed at understanding the impact of gender identity on competitive fairness in chess, with the goal of establishing guidelines that are both inclusive and equitable.

Chess has the unique ability to bring people together, challenging us to think deeply not only about the game in front of us but also about the world around us.

 760   9 mo   Company News   main feature

World Chess announces 3-year partnership with ITcom Domains

World Chess plc (LSE: CHSS), a leading chess organisation seeking to promote the mass market appeal of chess globally through the offering of different chess-related activities, is pleased to announce that it has signed a three-year partnership agreement (the “Agreement”) with ITcom Domains LTD (‘it.com’) for its Armageddon Series. World Chess will receive more than €1.2 million over the course of the Agreement, aimed at opening the world of chess to wider audiences and supporting the chess community.

Photo: World Chess

it.com is an international domain name registry, offering third-level domain names under the it.com zone. It will become the official sponsor of Armageddon, World Chess’ fresh new twist to the traditional and timeless game, whereby players compete in a global chess series under immense time pressure. The series has daily matches consisting of two blitz games (three minutes plus a two-second move increment) and, if necessary, an Armageddon game (five minutes for White, four for Black). The 2023 Armageddon series is currently underway and being broadcasted on 17 television channels worldwide, with the Grand Finale week set to commence on 14 September 2023 at the World Chess Club Berlin.

As part of the partnership, it.com will receive logo placement in the playing zone of the series as well as on the players’ uniforms. It will also gain access to broadcasting and video content and be included in digital integration. Furthermore, it.com and World Chess plan to jointly develop services for both physical and online chess clubs that will be introduced later this year, to help popularise the game.

Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive Officer of World Chess, said:

“We are delighted to partner with it.com Domains and are proud to name them as our official sponsor of the Armageddon Series. This collaboration brings together two innovative and forward-thinking organisations with the shared goal of expanding the mass market appeal of chess globally.

‘We are excited to continue revolutionising the chess landscape alongside it.com over the coming years, who through this partnership will not only contribute to the development of World Chess but also create a truly unique experience for world chess customers through its impressive international domain registry.’

Andrew Insarov, Chief Executive Officer of it.com, said:

‘Chess has been hugely popular among the IT community and we are happy to support the sport, especially the Armageddon Championship Series as it’s one of the most entertaining formats out there. This partnership allows us to raise awareness of it.com domains whilst enjoying chess, the game we love so much!’

 2943   10 mo   Armageddon   Company News   main feature   Sponsorships

Rapport Wins the Armageddon Series: Europe & Africa

GM Richard Rapport emerged victorious in the Armageddon Championship Series, dominating the world’s top players and winning the Europe & Africa qualifier. This victory secured his spot in the Grand Finale in September, where he will be joined by the tournament’s runner-up, GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda. Alongside a formidable lineup of finalists including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, and Humpy Koneru, they will compete for the coveted prize of €200,000.

Photo: Max Avdeev

The Armageddon Championship Series is not a typical chess tournament with its awe-inspiring visuals, intense time pressure, nerve-wracking drama, and soaring heart rates. With esteemed players such as Michael Adams (England), Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France), Richard Rapport (Romania), Jan-Krzysztof Duda (Poland), Jorden van Foreest (Netherlands), Vincent Keymer (Germany), Matthias Bluebaum, and Alexander Donchenko, this competition has captivated chess enthusiasts worldwide, embarking on an exhilarating journey.

As one of the most spectacular and widely broadcasted chess events of the year, the Armageddon Championship Series is live-streamed on over 18 online and TV platforms. Exciting moments from the tournament will be featured globally on networks like CNBC, BeIN Sports, and FOX Australia. The integration of technological advancements, such as real-time heart rate monitoring, has sparked significant interest in the chess community over the past week.
World Chess, an innovative chess company, has taken a unique approach to showcasing the Armageddon Championship Series. Their stunning bespoke studio set places the players at the heart of the action, deviating from traditional presentations and revealing chess as a dynamic, modern, and thrilling sport. The Armageddon Championship Series is redefining the visuals for the next generation of chess.

The Grand Finale of the tournament will be held from September 14th to 20th, following the same dramatic format and intense time pressure as the previous events. Chess enthusiasts can catch all the exciting action and highlights on World Chess’s official YouTube channel.

Interesting facts about the highest heart rates:
— Richard Rapport recorded a heart rate of 175 bpm.
— Michael Adams recorded a heart rate of 118 bpm.
— Maxime Vachier-Lagrave recorded a heart rate of 139 bpm.
— Jan-Krzysztof Duda recorded a heart rate of 152 bpm.
— Jorden van Foreest recorded a heart rate of 172 bpm.
— Vincent Keymer recorded a heart rate of 165 bpm.
— Matthias Bluebaum recorded a heart rate of 149 bpm.
— Alexander Donchenko recorded a heart rate of 133 bpm.

 2705   11 mo   Armageddon   Events   main feature

World Chess’ Armageddon Series announces Europe and Africa Week

World Chess Plc (LSE: CHSS), a leading chess organisation seeking to promote the mass market appeal of chess globally through the commercial offering of different chess-related activities, continues its Armageddon Championship Series with Europe and Africa week. Kickstarting on June 12, the high-stakes event will follow the same dramatic format and immense time pressure constraints as the previous Armageddon events.

World Chess launched the Armageddon Championship in March 2023, bringing a fresh new twist to this traditional and timeless game. The series has daily matches consisting of two blitz games (three minutes plus a two-second move increment) and, if necessary, an Armageddon game (five minutes for White, four for Black). So far, the championship has hosted the Americas, Asia and Oceania and Women’s Week. The Europe and Africa week will be the penultimate leg of the series before the Grand Finale which will be streamed on international television in September.

The start of the tournament will feature eight players from Europe & Africa region, including Michael Adams from England. Michael became a chess grandmaster at seventeen, is a seven-time British Chess Champion and holds the highest achieved chess player rating of anyone in England.

In addition to this, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France), Richard Rapport (Romania), Jan-Krzysztof Duda (Poland), Jorden van Foreest (Netherlands), Vincent Keymer (Germany), as well as Matthias Bluebaum (Germany) and Alexander Donchenko (Germany), both of whom successfully qualified online, will also be competing. This collection of Individuals will battle it out in a double-elimination format, with daily matches consisting of two blitz games with the potential for an additional Armageddon game if a victory does not emerge.

The winner and runner-up will join an exciting line-up of finalists in the Grand Finale to be held at World Chess’ newly opened Chess Club in Berlin, where they will compete for the total prize of €200,000. The tournament will follow a dramatic format, with the players’ real-time heartbeat and calories burnt displayed alongside immense time controls and breakneck moves all adding to the excitement.

The Armageddon series is being broadcast on 17 television channels worldwide, as well as World Chess’ official YouTube channel, with expert commentary and analysis provided by Grandmaster Simon Williams and International Master Jovanka Houska every day at 19:00 CEST.

Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive Officer of World Chess, said: “It has been fantastic to watch the global accumulation of chess players come together to compete in the Armageddon series. As we now head towards the Grand Finale it has been a real joy to watch the fast-paced matches between chess players of different experiences, playing styles and nationalities.

‘The series has created an atmosphere of suspense and excitement and highlighted the benefits of embracing innovative formats such as Armageddon, enabling top-level chess to entice a broader audience and ignite greater passion amongst fans.

‘We offer our best wishes to all the players and are excited to get Europe and Africa Week of the Armageddon Championship underway.’

 3167   11 mo   Armageddon   Company News   Events   main feature

Official opening of World Chess Club Berlin

World Chess Plc (LSE: CHSS), a leading chess organisation seeking to promote the mass market appeal of chess globally through the commercial offering of different chess-related activities, is pleased to announce that World Chess Club Berlin (the “Club”) has now officially opened.

Visitors to the World Chess Club Berlin play a game at the upstairs tournament area. The club features a piazza, a coffee shop, a sophisticated bar, and more.

The opening marks the launch of World Chess’ ambitions to reinvent the chess club culture in its entirety. The aim is to modernise the concept to fit more readily into mainstream society and function more as a social and collaborative centre. World Chess sees Berlin as an obvious location to debut this new and revised approach, given the cumulative factors of the substantial popularity of chess within Germany, and its vibrant café and bar scene.

The Club is located in the centre of the city on the popular street of Unter Den Linden, which starkly contrasts traditional chess clubs that have lately functioned out of multipurpose rooms. It will operate as a bar, event space, concept chess shop, coffee shop, and café and is hoped to set a new standard for the whole industry.

World Chess Club Berlin will also act as a hub, hosting chess events for the respective city as well as the rest of Europe. In addition, it will operate as the Armageddon Chess Series’ headquarters, with the 2023 series already being staged and filmed from its bespoke, purpose-built studio.

As the Berlin Club is part of the World Chess ecosystem, members of the FIDE Online Arena will get additional discounts and member-only access to a limited number of events. In keeping with World Chess’ aim to grow the sport and encourage people from all backgrounds, the Club is open to all with no need for a membership.

The Club will not only operate as a symbolically significant space for the chess community but is also visually captivating, standing to act as a physical landmark for the sport going forward. World Chess believes this is only the beginning of the chess club renaissance and intends to open further clubs around the world in the future.

Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive Officer of World Chess, said:

“To date, chess has suffered from a lack of dedicated clubs and those that do exist are often very traditional, which can be intimidating for many. We wanted to build a club that is a symbolically significant space for the chess community, for both those living in and visiting Berlin.

‘Whilst technology has allowed the sport to grow virtually, we are also seeing a growing trend of people wanting to meet and play together, so we want to help facilitate and promote this immensely important social component through the Berlin Club.

‘The new club will play an important role in helping to bring chess out of the traditional stereotype and back into the modern world so that it can be shared and appreciated by all. The process of opening the World Chess Club Berlin has been very rewarding and we cannot wait to continue revolutionising chess clubs across the world in the future. Please do stop by if you are ever in Berlin and do let us know if you have a suggestion as to which city we should open our next club in!’

 3730   12 mo   Company News   main feature

Bibisara Assaubayeva steamrolls her way to the Armageddon Grand Finale

In Berlin, Germany, on May 14, 2023, the Armageddon Championship Series witnessed a victory by 19-year-old Bibisara Assaubayeva from Kazakhstan, who bulldozed over the world champions to win the Women’s Week. This victory secured her a place in the Grand Finale in September, alongside the tournament’s runner-up, Indian Grandmaster Humpy Koneru. Together, they will join an exciting line-up of finalists, including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, and Nodirbek Abdusattorov, and compete for the main prize of €200,000.

The Armageddon Championship Series is set apart from typical chess tournaments by stunning visuals, colossal time pressure, nail-biting drama, and sky-high heart rates (yes, we measure it!) across six games. With a roster of top players like Gunay Mammadzada, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Alina Kashlinskaya, Sara Khadem, Nana Dzagnidze, and Elisabeth Paehtz, this competition has become a thrilling journey for chess fans worldwide.

This tournament has become one of the most attractive and widely televised chess events of the year, with live broadcasts on over 17 online and TV platforms. Highlights from the Armageddon Championship Series will be showcased worldwide on esteemed networks like CNBC, BeIN Sports, and FOX Australia. Technological innovations, such as real-time heart rate monitoring, have generated much buzz in the world of chess in the past week.

World Chess, an innovative chess company, has taken a unique approach to presenting the Armageddon Championship Series, utilizing a striking bespoke studio set that places players at the center of the game. This departure from traditional presentations showcases chess as a dynamic, modern, and thrillingly dramatic sport. Chess has been at the forefront of cutting-edge aesthetics for over a century, and the Armageddon Championship Series has the potential to redefine the next generation of visuals.

The next stage of the tournament will feature eight players from Europe & Africa region, including Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France), Richard Rapport (Romania), Jan-Krzysztof Duda (Poland), Michael Adams (England), Vincent Keymer (Germany), Jorden van Foreest (Netherlands), as well as Matthias Bluebaum (Germany) and Alexander Donchenko (Germany), who qualified online. This high-stakes event will take place from June 12th-18th, following the same dramatic format and immense time pressure as the previous events. Chess fans can catch all the action and highlights on World Chess’s official YouTube channel.

Interesting facts about the highest heart rates:
— Bibisara Assaubayeva on May 9 recorded a heart rate of 155 bpm.
— Nana Dzagnidze on May 9 recorded a heart rate of 105 bpm.
— Sara Khadem on May 10 recorded a heart rate of 154 bpm.
— Alexandra Kosteniuk on May 9 recorded a heart rate of 158 bpm.
— Elisabeth Paehtz on May 12 recorded a heart rate of 143 bpm.
— Alina Kashlinskaya on May 12 recorded a heart rate of 163 bpm.
— Gunay Mammadzada on May 14 recorded a heart rate of 173 bpm.
— Humpy Koneru on May 11 recorded a heart rate of 165 bpm.

 2462   1 y   Armageddon   Events   main feature

The Armageddon Series: Women’s Week to launch in Berlin beginning May 8

World Chess (LSE: CHSS) continues its Armageddon Championship Series with the Women’s Week, featuring eight of the world’s top female chess players in a high-stakes tournament to be held in Berlin from May 8 to May 14, 2023. This seven-day event promises to be a thrilling showcase of skill, strategy, and nail-biting drama.

The tournament will feature top-ranked players Alexandra Kosteniuk (Switzerland, blitz rating 2453, Humpy Koneru (India, blitz rating 2448), Bibisara Assaubayeva (Kazakhstan, blitz rating 2461), Sara Khadem (Iran, blitz rating 2417), Nana Dzagnidze (Georgia, blitz rating 2416), Gunay Mammadzada (Azerbaijan, blitz 2408), Alina Kashlinskaya (Poland, blitz rating 2382), and Elisabeth Paehtz** (Germany, blitz rating 2342).

They will battle it out in a double-elimination format with daily matches consisting of two blitz games with the potential for an additional Armageddon game if a victory does not emerge. The competitors will vie for an equal male category prize fund of €50,000 and the two available spots in the Grand Finale, where the qualifiers will battle it out for the €200,000 main prize.

The overarching aim of the week is not only to promote women in chess but to also reinforce our commitment to equality through the fairer distribution of prizes across the men’s and women’s matches. The winners of the tournament will go on to compete against male players, including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, and Nodirbek Abdusattorov — marking a dramatic, but overdue, moment in the sport’s history.

Ilya Merenzon, CEO of World Chess, said: “For chess to grow and thrive, it needs to do more to attract female players. Chess remains a male-dominated sport, but World Chess is committed to changing this by promoting and creating welcoming environments where women can also compete against their male counterparts. We are thrilled to have this incredible female line-up at the upcoming Armageddon Week and believe it will be as spectacular and impactful as the plot of Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit, whilst helping to inspire a new generation of female players.”
The tournament will follow a dramatic format, with a real-time heartbeat display, frantic time controls, calories burned, and breakneck moves all adding to the excitement. Fans can watch the action with cutting-edge analysis by Grandmaster Simon Williams and International Master Jovanka Houska every day at 19:00 CET on over 17 television channels worldwide, as well as on World Chess’ official YouTube channel.

For the first few days, the players were divided into pairs as follows:

Day 1:
Elisabeth Paehtz — Gunay Mammadzada
Sara Khadem — Alina Kashlinskaya

Day 2:
Alexandra Kosteniuk — Humpy Koneru
Bibisara Assaubayeva — Nana Dzagnidze

The pairings will be established using the double-elimination system and will be determined by the results of the previous days.

May’s battle is set to be an unforgettable event for chess fans everywhere. Stay tuned for updates and highlights from the Armageddon Championship Series: Women’s Week, only from World Chess.

Leading partners supporting the Armageddon Championship Series:

Kaspersky is the Official Cybersecurity Partner;
FIDE Online Arena is the Official Gaming Platform;
The it.com domains is the Official Partner.

Armageddon Day 1

 3555   1 y   Armageddon   Company News   Events   main feature

Ding Liren Is World Champion

World Chess team joins the chess world in congratulating Ding Liren on becoming the 17th World Chess Champion. It was a pleasure to be a part of your chess journey!

Photos: World Chess
 2263   1 y   Company News   main feature

World Chess Lists on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange

World Chess Plc, a company that reinvents chess for 21st-century users, is listed on London Stock Exchange’s main market under the ticker symbol ‘CHSS’. ‘That was the closest to CHESS as we could get given that ticker symbols have only four letters,’ — said Ilya Merenzon, World Chess CEO.

‘We are very excited to join LSE and become a new chapter as a public company,’ added Merenzon: “It means a new level of responsibility to the users, investors, and partners, and also a new level of transparency. We are keen to work with the users and chess players and fans to take this journey together”.

Read the official listing announcement.

 2368   1 y   Company News   IPO   main feature   World Chess
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