Key esports sponsorships and partnerships, March 2021

Esports sponsorships & partnerships

Each month, Esports Insider — in collaboration with YouGov, a data and analytics company that provides global consumer opinion and behavioral data — collates the period’s significant sponsorship and partnership news in esports.

YouGov recently expanded their Global Fan Profiles tool to monitor fan sentiment in esports, now enabling sponsors, properties, and rights holders to measure and track global consumer engagement in32 key markets). This advanced tool provides timely, relevant data of fanbases around the world, covering 200 leagues, 50 events, 45 game titles and 2,000 teams across sports and esports. Subscribers can create side-by-side comparisons of individual game titles, leagues, events, tournaments, and team fanbases and much more.

Readers can learn more about Global Fan Profiles here.


Spotlighted story

bbno$ discusses esports collaboration following OFFMETA launch

bbno$ OFFMETA
Credit: Mats Schram

Last month we interviewed rap sensation bbno$ — pronounced ‘baby no money’ — about his new music agreement with the ESL Pro League Season 13 in CS:GO.

Bbno$ is the first artist that newly founded music label OFFMETA represents. OFFMETA, focused on brokering relationships between musicians and the esports and gaming sector, was launched last month by Line Rindvig and Jannis Wenderholm, whom we also spoke with for the piece.

Read the interview here.


Esports Entertainment Group agrees Denver Broncos, Kraft Sports deals

Broncos Esports Entertainment Group
Credit: Esports Entertainment Group

Publicly listed gambling company Esports Entertainment Group (EEG) last month agreed partnerships with two massive companies — one with NFL franchise Denver Broncos, and another with Kraft Sports, owned by billionaire Robert Kraft.

In the former case, EEG will operate Madden NFL esports tournaments for the Broncos using EEG’s Esports Gaming League (EGL) platform. In the latter case, EEG will use the New England Patriots’s and New England Revolution’s marks to promote bi-annual esports tournaments on the EGL platform.

Click the corresponding links in the title to read more about each story.


Guild Esports announces multi-million-pound Subway deal

Credit: Guild Esports

British esports org Guild Esports last month announced a two-year sponsorship deal with Subway. The agreement will encompass 55 EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) markets.

Subway branding will be featured on Guild team jerseys, across branded content, and throughout Guild’s London headquarters opening later this year.


Alienware ends Riot Games partnership amid sexism controversy

Nicolo Laurent
Pictured: Nicolo Laurent, Riot Games CEO, who has been accused of sexual harassment. Image credit: Riot Games

Alienware will end its partnership with Riot Games 10 months early following sexual-harassment allegations against Riot CEO Nicolo Laurent. Alienware cited concern with the game developer’s public image amid harassment claims and other controversies, according to a report from Dot Esports.

In August 2018, Kotaku reported numerous allegations of sexism and sexual harassment at Riot. In December 2018 Riot suspended Chief Operating Officer Scott Gelb after a report surfaced detailing allegations of inappropriate conduct.


Oakley sponsors Scump

Scump x Oakley
Credit: Oakley

Oakley announced the sponsorship of legendary esports athlete Seth ‘Scump’ Abner in early March. Oakley will be Scump’s official eyewear partner. 

“It is an honour to be the first esports athlete on Team Oakley,” Scump said in a release. “I’m excited to introduce the brand’s offerings to my fans and engage with other athletes on their roster.”


Evil Geniuses strikes POINT3, Elysian, Bud Light partnerships

Evil Geniuses POINT3
Credit: Evil Geniuses

North American esports org Evil Geniuses had a busy March, striking three separate partnerships — two of which were with alcoholic-beverage companies.

The first deal announced by EG was with Bud Light, making the company its official beer sponsor.

The second was with American brewery Elysian Brewing. Elysian will be EG’s official craft-beer partner. The companies have a custom video series planned titled ‘Open Space’.

Thirdly was POINT3, a performance-apparel company based in Atlanta, Georgia. 


MAD Lions partners with SEAT

European esports org MAD Lions, owned by OverActive Media, has partnered with automobile manufacturer SEAT. 

The partnership will include broad-range advertising, in-person and digital activations, and original content creation.


Enthusiast Gaming partners with TikTok

Enthusiast x TikTok

Enthusiast Gaming, parent company of esports org Luminosity Gaming, last month announced a partnership with TikTok. TikTok will leverage Enthusiast’s platform of esports communities to further integrate the app into the esports and gaming sector.

Enthusiast Gaming recently announced the launch of esports news platform Upcomer, which is a merger between Upcomer and Daily Esports — both of which were already owned by Enthusiast.


WePlay Esports secures DAZN, GRID, 1xBet partnerships

WePlay Esports x 1xBet
Credit: WePlay Esports

Last month, media holding company and tournament organiser WePlay Esports announced three separate partnerships.

The first was with esports data platform GRID. WePlay will provide in-game data to GRID during its tournaments to support ‘fair and open play’.

The second to be announced was with sport streaming service DAZN to broadcast the 2021 WePlay Ultimate Fighting League on the platform.

Thirdly, WePlay Esports partnered with bookie 1xBet — despite previous controversy involving 1xBet. In 2019, the Gambling Commission wrote to Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea FC and Liverpool FC to cut ties with the bookie after a Sunday Times report surfaced connecting 1xBet to betting on children’s sports, cockfighting, and a pornographic casino. 1xBet was prohibited from operating in Britain after the report was released.

Nevertheless, 1xBet also agreed a global betting partnership with ESL last month.


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