Biography – Koen Schobbers

Biography

HOW IT ALL BEGAN

Koen Schobbers

Koen schobbers became a professional gamer in the racegame Trackmania when he was 15 years old. But, Koen's passion for speed started the moment he was born. Everything he did had to do with speed and competition: quickest crawler, first one to open the door for the nanny, fastest player on the football field... Once he got in touch with gokarts he knew what he wanted to do. He was fast, had no fear and had complete trust in his skills behind the wheel. Losing was no option. Instead, he analysed his laps and tried again. His passion for racing was noticed by his parents and they decided Koen wasn't allowed to race as a sport in real life. Instead, they gave him gaming consoles with racing games so he could race virtually! No one could've foreseen the impact this choice was going to have on his life.

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Koen's Story

2006

First time playing Trackmania due to his dad

After 2 weeks of playing got asked by SeeSports to play for their team

2007

First contract with the professional esports organization Begrip Gaming

2008

Winning the biggest online tournament with Begrip Gaming: Stadium Team Championship

Change of his ingame name from ”Koen” to ”Koenz” due to a special reason

December: the Trackmania team stops playing for Begrip Gaming due to these circumstances

Remaining players go to Above-Gaming, later Team YoYoTech

2009

Leaving Team YoYoTech for Raptor Gaming

August: Raptor Gaming quit, remaining players went to 4Kings

2010

Februari: stopped playing Trackmania due to a lack of motivation

Started playing again after his Higher General Secondary Education exams in June

Pro gamer for Team Infused

2011

June: Step down from Team Infused to Benelux organization mCon esports due to his final year of pre-university education

Winning his first ever LAN-party: The Party

2012

Winning the Stadium Team Championship for the 2nd time as guest driver for Team Dignitas

Winning The Party LAN

Winning the Frag-0-Matic LAN

Winning The Reality LAN

2013

3rd at the Trackmania World Championship

Winning the ZrT Cup organized by Zerator

Contracted by Team Acer

Winning the ESL Premiership with Team Acer

Winner Frag-0-Matic LAN

2014

First interview in traditional media. Click here for the full overview

9th at the Trackmania World Championship

Won the Stadium Team Cup for the 3rd time with Team Acer

Winner The Party LAN

Winner Frag-0-Matic 16.0 LAN

Winner Frag-0-Matic 16.1 LAN

Winner The Reality LAN

Ambassador of the Dutch Esports Association

2015

Raised €1374,- for the Heart Foundation with a 24 hour livestream

Winner of the JoinTheForce Playstation 4 Cup

3rd place at Gamers Assembly France

Winner The Reality LAN

Winner Esportsfestival

Winner Black Label Esports Masters

9th at the Trackmania World Championship

Started playing Rocket League

2016

Winner of the Jonge 100 ”most promising youth till the age of 25”

Professional speaker at SportsSpeakers

Host of Inside Esports on ESPN

Became a founding member of the IeSF Athletes Commission

Team Acer stops, management and all teams go to Team Expert

Became an Acer ambassador

7th at the Trackmania World Championship

Top 64 Rocket League Championship Series Europe

2017

Stopped playing Trackmania professionally, continued with Rocket League for mCon esports

First esports athlete with a special athlete status

Winner The Reality LAN

2nd at the ESL Benelux Championship

Winner Kayzr Benelux Championship

2018

Start of his medical master’s degree gap year

NOS Langs de Lijn esports expert

Collaboration with Spinnin’ Records

Collaboration with the KNMV: coach of the esports team

Ambassador of the Disabled Sports Fund

Manager of the mCon esports Rocket League team

Winner Frag-0-Matic Rocket League

Winner The Party Rocket League

2019

Collaboration with Vodafone, KIA and the Royal Netherlands Air Force

Invitation for the NOC*NSF Sports gala

TEDx talk ‘How To (Re)Connect With Your Gaming Child

Host of Dreamhack Rotterdam

NOC*NSF International Athlete representative

2020

Boardmember and vice chair of the Athletes, Players & Community Commission of the Global Esports Federation

Author of his book ‘My Gaming Child’

Founder of Parents of Play

2021

Host BOTS.TV

Princess Laurentien supports the mission of ‘Mijn Gamende Kind’

Professional speaker at Speakers Academy

Founder of the Dutch Esports Academy (DESA)

2022

International professional speaker at global speakersbureau Chartwell Speakers

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GLOBAL

Keynote speaker

Koen used to follow a master’s degree in medicine with the goal of becoming a surgeon. Things changed.

Someone once called Koen rebellious and, he understands. What he did was against the norm at the time: being the first professional gamer in the Netherlands to receive a professional sports status, continuously battling adversity and stigma through traditional media and presentations, and putting his masters degree in medicine on hold to follow his passion in the gaming and esports industry. The path into the unknown has always been more interesting to him.

His experience of talking to traditional media led him to an opportunity to become the anchorman of a gaming and esports show on ESPN. As a result, he was approached by SportsSpeakers to speak at an event in 2016 about his personal experiences and the industry. After his speech he immediately realized this is where his passion and talent came together.

Koen is now focused on delivering unique and personalized presentations and workshops with the goal of informing, inspiring and activating his audience. His goal is not to just share some random words about the industry he loves, but to create a lasting change in feeling, thinking and behaving by speaking in an open, accessible, and down to earth style.

Koen has been a speaker at over 200 events since 2016 and he’s proud to have spoken at TEDx, The Next Web, the International Telecommunication Union, the European Network of Academic Sports Services, KLM, YPO, Populous, Vodafone, Azerion, Capgemini, Lonza, van Eeghen and the Netherlands Sports Council among many other amazing conferences, businesses, universities and governing bodies across the globe.

Oftentimes, he creates the first impression for many people in his audience on what the gaming and esports industry is really about, what the possibilities are and how to deal with certain gaming situations. This has led to the existence of Parents of Play and to many cooperations where he has helped organizations to implement the gaming and esports industry in their strategies and campaigns. He’s proud to call Vodafone, KIA, Spinnin’ Records, Populous, Azerion, AXXS and the Royal Netherlands Airforce as some of his clients.

Koen is represented in the Benelux region by SportsSpeakers since 2016 and is represented on a global level by international speakers agency Chartwell Speakers since 2022.

Master's degree

Medical Student

A difficult decision had to be made in 2017. Will Koen start his master’s degree in medicine, or will he follow his passion in the gaming and esports industry? Combining both would be a very difficult task. He searched for a solution and got in touch with Prof. Dr. Schijven, a surgeon with a passion for serious games in healthcare and e-health. Together they came up with the idea to try and provide Koen with a special study program to combine his esports career with his medical career in the Amsterdam Medical Center. After 6 months of discussing with several stakeholders, the AMC announced that Koen would receive a topsportstatus. This status is normally only provided to professional athletes in traditional sports. Koen was the first esports athlete to receive a topsportstatus in the Netherlands.

Anchorman

ESPN

Koen first appeared on national television in an interview with the NOS about esports and the NOC*NSF. Since then, he has been covered in over 300 media outlets. Thanks to his media appearances, Koen was approached to become the anchorman of a show called Inside Esports, broadcasted on ESPN and Twitch.tv in 2016. That same year, he also became a founding member of the athletes commission of the International Esports Federation (IESF). Since January 2020 he is a boardmember and vice chair of the Athletes, Players & Community Commission of the Global Esports Federation.