Esports

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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.

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.

Chinese PC hardware brand Lenovo has signed its first US esports partnership with California-based Team SoloMid

Electronics brand AOC has partnered with Red Bull to support the energy drinks company’s esports competitions.

US brewing company MillerCoors has struck its first esports partnership with North American esports team Complexity Gaming

The National Hockey League has announced it has signed seven sponsors for its esports competition, the NHL Gaming World Championship, each of which will activate at a Regional Final and/or the World Final.

Features

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 has signed as the first Global Partner of League of Legends, Riot Games' hugely popular esports series and online game.

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.