In a Weibo post advertising a new recruitment round for pro players, Chinese side JD Gaming revealed what kind of salaries can LPL players expect to earn, as well as the necessary requirements to apply.
According to the ad, players on the main JDG team can earn between 500K to 10M CNY annually, or approx. $74,400 to $1.48M. For the academy team Joy Dream (JDM), the salaries vary between $37,200 to $148,000 annually.
These are significant numbers, especially the upper end of JDG’s LPL salary. While it is unlikely that a new recruit can earn millions on their first year, the potential for it is lucrative. What’s interesting to note, however, is the huge gap between the lower and upper end of the salary window — a difference of $1.4M — giving the org a lot of freedom to maneuver.
Youth team players, on the other hand, don’t have access to such numbers and they’re expected to earn between 80-200K CNY a year, or $12-30K.
JDG are one of the eight teams which made the LPL Spring Playoffs this season. The team underwent an almost complete revamp during the 2018 off-season, bringing in Levi, Flawless, Bvoy and Imp. JDG finished 8th in the regular season, narrowly edging out Bilibili Gaming to play playoffs — their third top 8 in a row. JDG’s full recruitment post reads:
JD Gaming’s youth team recruitment for 2019 season has officially started. You don’t have to be well-experienced, but you do have to be gifted, enthusiastic and patient. Here, you can continue pursuing your dream and make a living by yourself at the same time, as long as you are capable enough. So, if you are confident about your talent, have a try! A salary of millions CNY await you.
— 15 to 20 years old
— Master 300LP and above on CN Master & Challenger server/Master tier and above on KR server.
— Supportive family, possession of optimistic character and team spirit.
— Player with 0 experience with other youth teams or clubs preferred.
Salaries and Perks
— Salary Details
a. JDG Key Players: A formal professional player contract with an annual salary from 500k to 10m CNY.
b. JDM Key Players: A formal professional player contract with an annual salary from 250k to 1m CNY.
c. Youth Team Players: A youth player contract with an annual salary from 80k to 200k CNY
— Quick Promotion Channel
The team’s coach will assess player’s performance regularly. Youth team players with outstanding performance can be promoted to JDM within as short a time frame as one month. Outstanding JDM players can be promoted to JDG after playing in LDL for one season.
— Permanent referral Reward
People with successful referrals will receive cash rewards no matter when the youth player gets promoted.
a. Player signs a contract with JDG youth team: 2,000 CNY referral reward.
b. Player promoted to JDM: 20,000 CNY referral reward
c. Player promoted to JDG: 100,000 CNY referral reward