Gaming platform Rival has teamed up with footwear manufacturer New Balance to create a series of online community-focused tournaments.
According to a release, the tournaments will help provide the community with access to the footwear brand through athletes, ambassadors and exclusive products.
The first tournament, set to take place in spring, will see fans compete in Rocket League for the opportunity to win New Balance sneakers and apparel. It has not been revealed if other games will be featured in future tournaments.
Since its foundation in 2019, Rival has collaborated with a range of traditional sports clubs, bridging the gap between gaming and sports fandoms.
The company has previously worked with Major League Soccer (MLS) team FC Cincinnati and football clubs Wycombe Wanderers and Stevenage FC. Earlier this year, the platform also launched ‘The Realm’ with NBA team Sacramento Kings.
New Balance’s involvement in the gaming and esports space has been relatively sparse. However, in 2018 the brand did become a presenting partner of the F1 Esports Series.
Rival’s collaboration with New Balance is its third with a consumer brand, though it is the first in the athletics space.
Chris Davis, New Balance CMO and SVP of Merchandising, commented: “The world of gaming is an increasingly important medium due to the sense of community and connectivity that the experience fosters. We are excited to formally announce a relationship with Rival to bring unique and immersive gaming tournaments to consumers.
“As a brand, we consistently strive to challenge the status quo and possess a relentless desire to innovate and evolve. New Balance sees significant opportunities to increase engagement and create meaningful consumer connectivity by uniting our fans through the Rival gaming experience.”