Riot Games has estimated that the LEC Spring Finals contributed €2,358,417 (£2,118,247.60) to the local economy of Rotterdam.
A study surrounding the event combined on-site surveys with ticket sale data to find an estimated figure, allowing the developer to evaluate the impact it delivers with its events.
Rotterdam Ahoy was the first venue chosen through Riot Games’ host city programme, an initiative that was created in association with Burson Cohn & Wolfe Sports. The programme took a cue from a traditional sports structure and saw over 40 cities bid to host the Spring Finals.
Jolanda Jansen, CEO of Rotterdam Ahoy commented on the findings: “We were thrilled to host Riot Games in our venue (2016 for the EU LCS and 2019 for the LEC Spring Finals). Our indoor arena is made for big and exciting sporting events and is the perfect location in Rotterdam, and even in the Netherlands, for esports tournaments. Amazing atmosphere, great audience and we would love to host more esports events in the future!”
As the study identified, the average guest spent €52.60 (£47.23) per day and 87.13% of the event’s guests weren’t local to Rotterdam, travelling from as far away as China, South Korea, and Peru.
Alban Dechelotte, Head of Sponsorship & Business Development EU Esport at Riot Games added: “Esports is maturing. We’re establishing processes based on long-standing sports to elevate the industry and to develop the ecosystem further. At the same time we’re offering something traditional sports doesn’t have, a younger tech-oriented audience, and this provides tremendous value for cities looking to attract a hard to reach demographic. Whilst the broadcast potential of esports means we’re able to promote a city on an international scale. Streaming knows no borders.”
Riot Games has confirmed that it is expanding the programme with cities now being invited to bid two years in advance; applications for 2021 are already open.
In partnership with LION Cereals, the LEC Summer Split finals will be heading to Athens, Greece. On September 7th and 8th, the top six LEC teams will go head-to-head to be crowned the Summer Split winner and a place at the 2019 World Championship.
Esports Insider says: While still in its infancy, the host city programme seems to already be seeing successful results. Following Athens, a first-time location that has already been announced, we look forward to seeing what new cities LEC will head to next. We’re also curious to see if any other esports will look to take on this process in the near future.