Newell: "Strong Interest" from Some Valve Staff in NZ

In an interview with TVNZ News, Valve boss Gabe Newell discusses a variety of topics, including the possibility of holding an esports tournament in New Zealand, as well as the interest some Valve staff having in moving there as well, at least temporarily (thanks ResetEra). Gabe has been living in New Zealand after he was sort of stranded there by COVID-19 last March. He obviously enjoys the place, and he discusses the envy some Valve employees in Bellevue, Washington express about his situation. He has reservations, but does admit there's grassroots "strong interest" from Valve staff in lockdown to move there, at least until the pandemic is under control:
Newell revealed that there is "strong interest" from Valve employees to move to New Zealand, after last year saying there were no active plans to make that happen.

"We were actually just talking about that — I was literally having that conversation earlier," he said.

However, he doesn't want to jump the gun and confirm that any plans are in motion.

"You don't want to uproot a bunch of families, have them come here, and then the situation gets a bunch better and then they have to turn around and go back — so that's why getting a better handle on how long the epidemic is going to be affecting our operational decisions is important to that.

"But there's strong interest — after talking to these people who've literally been locked in their houses except to go out for groceries for the last nine months — and I'm like, 'Oh look, here I am at a motorsports race, or here I am at Starship, at the hospital talking to doctors or reviewing optic nerve damage from Covid-19 patients because of my interest in neuroscience,' and they're like, 'Yeah, I'm still at home — can we come to New Zealand now?'

"There's a lot of interest at a grass roots level inside of the company to have some people move."