On Sept. 8, esports organization XSET announced that it had promoted Steve Birkhold to the role of chief operating officer, but didn’t mention the fact that he would be replacing co-founder Marco Mereu in the role—in fact the announcement didn’t mention the XSET co-founder at all, which was a little odd.
shortly thereafter, Mereu announced on social media that he had left the company but still had a financial stake in the organization he helped found in 2020 alongside Greg Selkoe, Wil Eddins, and Clinton Sparks. Mereu joined XSET from publicly-traded esports company Super League Gaming in 2020, where he served as senior VP of content distribution and GM of Framerate (a company he founded), which SLG acquired in the summer of 2019.
While it’s unclear what happened with XSET or if Mereu worked out a deal to divest himself of any financial interest in the organization he helped found (or is still a co-owner), it appears that he is officially turning the page with the launch of a new esports organization called M80, and this new company will be competing in multiple esports titles, starting with Valorant.
A video introducing the organization (which begins with Mereu reading a newspaper) shows the roster that will compete in Valorant Challengers league in 2023. That roster includes former Ghost Gaming players Mohamed “johnqt” Amine Ouarid, Gianfranco “koalanoob” Potestio, and Marc-Andre “NiSMO” Tayar; former NRG Esports player Daniel “eeiu” Vucenovic and Alexander “Zander” Dituri, who most recently played for Version1.