This week in esports: Edgar Davids, Tespa, Nielsen and T-Mobile

18 August 2017


A dull week in esports? Not a chance. Another frenetic week of news has seen a somewhat bizarre story emerge as Edgar Davids has won a lawsuit against Riot Games over the “Striker Lucian” skin. Additionally, powerhouse Nielsen has launched an esports vertical, T-Mobile has secured deals with Cloud9 and TSM and Tespa will expand its collegiate esports offerings in conjunction with Blizzard and Psyonix.
Edgar Davids and the ‘Striker Lucian’ skin.

Edgar Davids wins law suit against Riot Games

In a monumental clash of two worlds, Edgar Davids, the former professional football star for the likes of Juventus and the Netherlands has won a law suit against League of Legends developer Riot Games. 

The dispute was over the likeness of the “Striker Lucian” skin (pictured above). The skin, which is a purchasable in-game cosmetic feature for the character Lucian, bears a discernible likeness to the former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Tottenham pro. Alongside similar dark skin and dreadlocks, the skin features Davids’ signature orange goggles – a unique accessory worn due to the footballer’s glaucoma condition.

Riot must now reveal how much money the skin has made in the Netherlands, with a percentage to go to Davids as compensation, according to court documents from the case. That’s probably no small amount, as the majority of Riot’s revenues – which totalled $1.6 billion (£1.2b) last year alone – are fuelled by microtransactions just like these.

Read the full article here.

Nielsen launch esports vertical

Nielsen, a global performance management company listed on the New York Stock Exchange has announced the launch of Nielsen Esports.

The new business vertical is set to leverage the company’s expertise in media consumption and valuation to provide sponsorship valuation, fan insights, industry research and consulting services. 

The company has put in place an esports advisory board with several big names from the industry. It features representatives from ESL, ESPN, Facebook, FIFA, MLG/Activision Blizzard, NBA 2k, Twitch, Turner, Sony and YouTube but to name a few. 

Stephen Master, Managing Director of Nielsen Sports North America, and Nicole Pike, Vice President of Nielsen Games, have expanded their current roles within the Nielsen Entertainment group to co-lead the global esports business.

Read the full article here.

T-Mobile secure deals with Cloud9 and Team SoloMid

Copyright: anyaberkut / 123RF Stock Photo

The company has seriously stepped up its presence in esports by joining forces with two of the most popular organisations in the West. The company has a long history of sporting sponsorships, and recently worked with Twitch when sponsoring a FGC event at E3 earlier this year.

In an announcement on their website, TSM stated they “could not be happier” to be working with T-Mobile. They claim that through community integration they will give esports fans “more access to the sport they love”, although whether that will include any live events has not yet been confirmed.

In a similar release on Cloud9’s official website, Cloud9 CEO Jack Etienne said that they’ve found a partnership that will “elevate us to the next level”.

Read the full article here.

Tespa to expand collegiate esports work in conjunction with Blizzard and Psyonix

The organisation will offer more prizes, broadcasts, competitions and membership options than ever for university-level players and fans.

Tespa will run its usual fare of OverwatchHearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm(including flagship tournament Heroes of the Dorm). This season, Blizzard will begin to emphasise Starcraft 2 and World of Warcraft more than ever. Plus, for the school year, Tespa will focus on its Rocket League competitions, which began with the Summer League 2017, with the help of Psyonix. They promise at least six live broadcasts per week and expanded content, highlighting the top moments of their collegiate leagues each week.

It will also offer over $1 million (£777,700.00) in scholarship money to participants. This is a sharp increase from its approximate $150,000 (£116670.00 GBP) prize pool last year in Overwatch’s Collegiate Series and the Hearthstone Training Grounds.

Tespa will also launch Tespa University, which it describes as “a central online hub to help students learn about all of Tespa’s programs and how to get involved.” Here, players and fans can join the organisation, find chapters and sign up for a number of amateur on- and off-season competitive leagues, dubbed the “Training Grounds.”

Read the full article here.