Oceania Overwatch outfit Blank Esports has partnered with the Vodafone Warriors.
Vodafone Warriors are a New Zealand-based rugby league side that competes in the Australian National Rugby League. The partnership will see the Overwatch Contenders side rebranded as Warriors Esports.
Blank Esports has been one of the longest-standing competitive Overwatch sides in the region, organisation predates the launch of Overwatch League and have competed internationally since July 2017. Along with the rebrand, Warriors Esports will continue to compete in the Australian Overwatch Contenders League and is reportedly looking to aggressively expand into other esports before the end of the year.
Vodafone Warriors CEO Cameron George expressed his excitement about the new partnership, stating that: “It’s estimated that this year around 427 million people worldwide will be watching some form of esports, so for the Vodafone Warriors it was a no brainer to have a presence in this growing industry.
“We know that many of our current fans are esports fanatics, as are many of our players, and we also hope to engage a different audience by having a presence through this exciting new partnership.”
A long and difficult road took our incredible new roster all the way to LAN, but it simply wasn’t meant to be. A stellar showing from @Order_Army, we can’t wait for a rematch! GGWP ?#OverwatchContenders #OverwatchEsports #IEM @owpathtopro @Blizzard_ANZ @BlizzEsportsANZ @IEM pic.twitter.com/nxwbTQyRI0
— Blank Esports (@BlankOCE) May 4, 2019
Also looking forward to what the partnership holds was Blank Esports Chairman Mark David: “The Vodafone Warriors will bring sports science expertise to our players and overall professionalism to how our club operates. In return, we will expand their brand to a new demographic.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Vodafone Warriors fans and New Zealand esports fans to get behind a homegrown success story as we get ready to make Warriors Esports the most successful club in [the] Asia Pacific.”
Esports Insider says: We’ve already seen Aussie Rules sides like the Adelaide Crows and Essendon Bombers get involved in LoL, so it’s great to see rugby follow suit. This is a great move, not only from a business standpoint. Professional sports clubs in Australia carry enormous cultural clout; partnerships such as these are massive in terms of the familiarisation of larger audiences with esports.