Virgin Media sponsors Usain Bolt co-owned esports organisation WYLDE

Image: WYLDE

British telecommunications giant Virgin Media has announced a partnership with Irish-based esports organisation WYLDE

The announcement also revealed that WYLDE will open its first performance centre based in Cork, Republic of Ireland. The centre, which will be ‘powered by Virgin Media’, is set to host competitive gaming events as well as boot camps for the organisation’s teams.

WYLDE is co-owned by Jamaican gold-medal-winning sprinter Usain Bolt and fields competitive teams in Rainbow Six: Siege, VALORANT, Rocket League and FIFA. After securing €375,000 (~£329,000) in funding in earlier this year, the organisation’s Rainbow Six Siege team reached the semi-finals of the $2m Gamers 8 tournament in Saudi Arabia.

According to a release, the announcement of the performance centre will allow WYLDE to host physical training sessions for its FIFA and Rainbow Six teams, as well as bolster its coaching practices.

To coincide with the WYLDE partnership, Virgin Media is also launching a nationwide content campaign in Ireland. The campaign will see two WYLDE Irish FIFA professionals showcasing Virgin Media broadband as they play competitively.

The campaign will attempt to replicate a high-energy sports campaign, featuring British actor Brian Cox doing a voiceover.

In the announcement, WYLDE CEO Steve Daley noted the importance of ‘world-class infrastructure’ to his team’s success. moreover, he stated that WYLDE was delighted to be working with Virgin Media to fulfil the organisation’s potential.

Paul Higgins, Vice President of Commercial at Virgin Media commented in a statement: “Research carried out by Virgin Media shows the remarkable growth of gaming and esports in Ireland.

“Our most recent research goes on to show just how prolific gaming is amongst the Irish public with a growing number of gamers looking to play online, highlighting the importance of a fast and reliable internet connection.

“The WYLDE esports Academy … is the first of its kind in Ireland and is an exciting opportunity to help nurture and support gaming talent in Ireland.”

Patrick Walker
Patrick is a freelance writer for ESI based in London, reporting on esports marketing and partnerships trends. He's currently playing VALORANT and Overwatch but always looking for the next big thing in competitive gaming.