Key esports sponsorships and partnerships, October 2020

Staying up to date with relevant news in the ever-changing esports industry can prove tasking. Thankfully, Esports Insider has streamlined the process by sifting through the most important sponsorships and partnerships this month. 

There were plenty of key announcements throughout October. Below is a list composed of the month’s most significant sponsorship and partnership news. 

Team Liquid renews partnership with Marvel Entertainment

Credit: Team Liquid

Team Liquid has announced the renewal of its partnership with Marvel Entertainment until 2022. The news followed the launch of Liquid’s new Marvel Retro Collection.

The partnership between Liquid and Marvel was initially launched at 2019’s Rift Rivals: North America vs Europe, a League of Legends LAN event. Liquid debuted Avengers-inspired jerseys donning the Team Liquid and Avengers logos.

IBM enters esports with Overwatch League data and sponsorship deal

Global technology and data services firm IBM has entered into an analytics and sponsorship deal with the Overwatch League, which runs through the 2022 season. The partnership marks IBM’s first foray into esports.

IBM is developing various data-driven solutions for the league using its IBM Watson artificial intelligence and cloud-based infrastructure.

TOP Esports attracts Beats Electronics jersey sponsorship

Photo Credit: lolesports / TOP Esports

Consumer audio manufacturer Beats Electronics has sponsored Chinese League of Legends organisation TOP Esports.

The Beats branding was spotted on the jerseys of TOP players during the quarter-finals of Worlds 2020, when TOP faced Fnatic. TOP was heavily favoured to reach the finals of Worlds, but were eliminated in the semi-finals by fellow Chinese team Suning Gaming.

Global Esports Federation teams up with various organisations

Last month, the Global Esports Federation (GEF) announced it had entered into partnerships with multiple significant companies, including Sports Innovation Lab, NielsenCapcom, Konami, and Sega.

The partnership with Sports Innovation Lab saw the technology and research company become a global supporter of the GEF. The former will use its knowledge and expertise to develop GEF’s events portfolio. The partnership with Nielsen will see the esteemed data company provide research, data, and insights to “amplify the value” of the GEF.

Three Japanese game publishers in Capcom, Konami and Sega also joined the GEF, all of which also joined GEF’s recently announced Publishers and Developers Advisory Council (PDAC).

The NUEL enters partnerships with Gscience, Levi’s

The NUEL Levi's
Credit: The NUEL

The NUEL, the facilitator of university esports tournaments in the UK, also entered into partnerships with two significant firms in October.

The first to be announced was a strategic, health-based partnership with esports-focused health group Gscience. The collaboration aims to develop “healthy gaming strategies” to promote physical and mental health to students across the UK. Last year, Gscience won Esports Insider’s startup competition The Clutch at ESI London.

The NUEL also announced a partnership with clothing brand Levi’s. Levi’s will serve as The NUEL’s main sponsor for its Winter 2020 season.

Alliance and Razer expand long-term partnership

Alliance and Razer partnership expands
Credit: Razer

Swedish esports organisation Alliance has furthered its partnership with gaming peripherals and accessories manufacturer Razer.

Alliance and Razer have long had a strong relationship, dating back to 2013 when Razer helped found Alliance. This renewed partnership will see Alliance become the global chair ambassador for Razer’s latest gaming chair, the Razer Iskur, which was announced at RazerCon this year.

Riot Games partners with Nerd Street Gamers, Engine Media for First Strike series in North America

Riot Games, developer of first-person-shooter VALORANT, announced last month it had partnered with both Nerd Street Gamers (NSG) and Engine Media/UMG Gaming—both of which agreed to facilitate separate North American qualifiers for VALORANT’s First Strike event.

The first qualifier, organised by NSG, commenced on October 26nd, whilst the UMG-facilitated qualifier will begin on November 11nd. Riot will organise “multiple Riot-produced” First Strike finals in December, but for now open qualifiers for First Strike are being outsourced to NSG and UMG—companies that have successfully organised grassroots VALORANT tournaments since the game’s release.

Team Vitality and Renault unveil performance facility in Stade de France

Team Vitality and Renault unveil performance facility
Credit: Team Vitality

French esports organisation Team Vitality, in partnership with Renault Group, has unveiled a new performance development centre in the Stade de France—the country’s national sports stadium.

The facility will be used to train Team Vitality players, particularly its Renault Vitality F1-esports team. The 2020 F1 Esports Series began on October 14; Renault Vitality currently sits third in the constructor standings.

Guild Esports announces £3.6m deal with European tech firm

David Beckham-affiliated UK esports organisation Guild Esports announced in October a sponsorship deal with an unknown European technology firm. The deal is said to be worth £3.6m over three years.

The technology firm in question is a financial-technology company, and will be revealed on November 22nd. Guild raised some eyebrows when its entrance on the London Stock Exchange closed at £41.2m, despite little esports history and few Guild Esports teams at the time. The Esports Observer reported the details of Guild’s agreement with Beckham, which saw Beckham guaranteed £15.25m over five years for the rights to his name and likeness to promote the Guild brand.

BLAST Premier partners with Nubia Technology ahead of Fall Series

Credit: BLAST

Esports tournament organiser BLAST Premier announced Nubia Technology as its latest partner in October, ahead of BLAST’s upcoming Counter Strike Fall Series.

As part of the deal, Nubia Technology’s RedMagic 5S gaming phone is to be promoted throughout the Fall Series. The CS:GO competition commenced on October 26.

Gaming in Turkey launches collegiate CS:GO league with FACEIT

Media hub and esports agency Gaming in Turkey has partnered with online esports tournament platform FACEIT, to launch a collegiate CS:GO league in Turkey. The partnership will formalise a collegiate CS:GO scene in Turkey that began flourishing in 2018.

The first tournament to take place through the collaboration will be the Collegiate Esports League Turkey, which begins during the Fall study semester. Turkish universities can already create squads and student communities on FACEIT’s platform.

Gaming in Turkey also plans to introduce collegiate League of Legends and VALORANT competitions in 2021.

Complexity Gaming expands Miller Lite partnership into streaming

Credit: Complexity Gaming

Last month, Complexity Gaming and Miller Lite announced an expansion of their previous partnership, with the focus shifting from live, in-person activations to streaming and content creation.

Complexity streamers and players of a legal drinking age will host special streams in partnership with Miller Lite.

CORSAIR Gaming Zone launched through Amuka Esports partnership

Leading peripherals manufacturer CORSAIR has partnered with Canadian venue and tournament organiser Amuka Esports for a multi-event partnership. CORSAIR will become the exclusive peripherals and gaming-chair partner of Waves Gaming, the flagship venue from Amuka Esports, which will also host a CORSAIR Gaming Zone.

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