Bundesliga football club Hertha BSC has added German railway company Deutsche Bahn as a partner of its esports division.
Known as Hertha BSC eSport Academy, the club competes in the Virtual Bundesliga.
Hertha BSC and Deutsche Bahn first started working together in 2006, and they extended their partnership in 2017 to celebrate the club’s 125 year anniversary.
Insurance firm AOK Nordost has acted as a jersey sponsor for the club’s esports efforts since it was launched in 2017. Announced in December of that particular year, the club partnered with agency Stark Esports to “discover and develop the best FIFA talents in the region”.
Competing alongside 21 other traditional sports clubs in Fifa, Hertha BSC competes in the VBL Club Championship – a virtual take on the Bundesliga that launched on January 16th. The league was founded by the German Football League (DFL).
This isn’t the first instance of Deutsche Bahn operating within the industry. In August last year, the company worked with Lagardère Sports to launch an esports prorgram for its employees. This included a tournament that identified the best League of Legends players in its staff, and ultimately sending them to play a showmatch against SK Gaming at Gamescom.
Esports Insider says: Hertha BSC proved it was one of the more forward-thinking German football clubs when it was the first to launch its own esports academy – since then, a plethora of teams have followed suit by entering the Virtual Bundesliga. It’s good to see a longstanding partner in Deutsche Bahn jump over to be involved with its efforts in esports too.