Esports

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Finnish state-owned energy company Fortum’s sponsorship of the DreamHack Masters Stockholm 2018 introduced the brand to a new audience of 18-to-35-year-olds in Sweden and the Nordics.

KFC responded to its ageing customer base and a well-publicised supply problem incident by setting up its own Call of Duty tournament, open to millions of everyday gamers.

US sportswear brand Nike is paying about $7.5m (€6.7m) per year to sponsor China’s League of Legends Pro League (LPL), according to industry sources.

American soft drink giant Coca-Cola will pay just under $3m (€2.65m) per season to partner with global esports property the Overwatch League (OWL), according to industry sources.

Manchester City’s first esports partnership, with US gaming accessories brand Turtle Beach, is worth about £200,000 ($264,000/€233,500) per season, SportBusiness Sponsorship has learned.

The Overwatch League has announced a multi-year partnership with Kellogg's, which will focus on co-marketing initiatives with the Michigan-based food manufacturing company's Cheez-It and Pringles products

Comcast-owned telco Xfinity has agreed a deal to become presenting sponsor of esports competition the Overwatch League’s 2019 season finale.

Payment services brand Mastercard has expanded its existing, global partnership with Riot Games for the League of Legends esports series

Kellogg’s-owned snack brand Pringles has signed its first partnership with a League of Legends esports property.

Features

Fnatic's new front-of-shirt deal with Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus is believed to be the biggest shirt deal in esports history, SportBusiness Sponsorship has learned.

With technology, rule changes and fan expectations constantly changing the way sports are played and viewed, Misha Sher, vice-president, Sport & Entertainment at Mediacom Worldwide, identifies five trends that will matter in 2019.

US tech brand Intel has expanded its relationship as Global Technical Partner of ESL, the world’s largest esports event organiser

US fast food chain McDonald’s has quit German football sponsorship to focus on esports, following a similar path taken by carmaker Mercedes-Benz last year.

Financial services firm Mastercard will pay between $8m (€7m) and $10m per year to partner with US video game developer Riot Games, according to industry sources.

Multinational telco Vodafone last month struck its third esports deal in the last 12 months, a multi-year deal with German esports promoter ESL.

André Fläckel, esports director, Lagardère Sports Germany, believes that brands and agencies need to prepare for the next stage in the commercial development of esports.

German telecommunications company Deutsche Telekom and its mobile network brand T-Mobile is using sponsorship to improve its market share in key markets and to boost brand awareness and sales

P&G-owned male grooming brand Gillette has become a Local Partner of the ESL-owned Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) event in Katowice, Poland, adding to a growing list of non-endemic brands on ESL’s competition roster.

Payments services brand Visa has become the latest major brand to sign a high-profile deal in esports, securing a one-year agreement with the Germany-based SK Gaming team.

Multinational telecoms company Orange has title sponsored the French Football League’s (LFP) companion esports Fifa 17 competition to engage more fans with its football sponsorship activation platform Le 12eme homme (The 12th man) and promote its ‘Fiber’ broadband product.

Mars-owned chocolate brand Snickers is the first new company to join esports’ ELeague for the competition’s second season, but ELeague is now keen to diversify its portfolio.

Soft drinks manufacturer Pepsi last month took a different tack to many brands entering esports, but a similar path to rival Coca-Cola, signing a title agreement for a grassroots league. Its Mountain Dew brand will sponsor an ESL qualifying tournament for the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) game.