Last week, China’s esports industry saw several significant partnerships and sponsorships. Chinese live streaming platform Huya signed an over 2 billion yuan ($310 million) media rights deal with League of Legends esports operator TJ Sports, marking a new milestone in China’s esports industry.
Among the top stories from across the country’s esports scene: domestic e-commerce platform JD.com and domestic diary brand Momchilovtsi have joined the upcoming League of Legends 2021 Mid-Season Invitational as the Chinese partner; JD.com also signed a two-year strategic partnership with TJ Sports; Funspark partnered with Elisa Esports, GRID Esports and Relog Media to organize a brand new CS:GO tournament circuit featuring $2.7M total prize money.
JD.com Signs Two-Year Partnership With TJ Sports, Becomes Chinese Partner for MSI
With the League of Legends 2021 Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) approaching, teams from all regional leagues have arrived in Iceland. According to TJ Sports, Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com and the diary brand Momchilovtsi joined MSI as the two Chinese partners. The global partners of the event will be Mercedes-Benz, MasterCard, BOSE and Chinese smartphone brand OPPO.
In addition, JD.com and TJ Sports signed a two-year strategic partnership at the signing ceremony hosted by the two companies. Vice President of JD.com Tao Ren and co-CEO of TJ Sports Lin Song attended the ceremony and signed the agreement. The officials expressed intentions to further explore the business model “Ecommerce x Esports.”
Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
JD.com has its own esports organization, JD Gaming (JDG), and has hosted an event branded the “Jingdong Cup” since 2019. The competition features Dota 2, PUBG, Honor of Kings, Peacekeeper Elite and other esports titles. JD.com also revealed that offline events and online activities drove the overall sales of gaming notebooks and wireless mouse to increase by 220% and 180%, respectively, during the 2020 Jingdong Cup Finals.
The two-year strategic partnership with TJ sports is likely to provide a boost for JD.com’s PC hardware e-commerce sales, given the LPL’s astronomical number of viewers.
Funspark Teams Up With Elisa Esports, Relog Media For New CS: GO Tournament Circuit ‘Elisa Champion of Champions’
China’s biggest CS:GO tournament organizer Funspark announced that the company has teamed up with Belgrade production company Relog Media, and Finnish CS:GO tournament organizer Elisa Esports to jointly create a new international CS:GO tournament circuit called “Elisa Champion of Champions Tour.”
The circuit will offer $2.7 million in total prize pool money from 2021 to 2022, distributed between three independent tournament series: The $1.2 million “Home Sweet Home Series” hosted by Relog Media; the $650,000 “Elisa Esports Series” hosted by Elisa Esports; and the $630,000 “Funspark ULTI” hosted by Funspark.
In addition, all tournament series under this circuit will use the same scoring system provided by Berlin-based esports data company GRID Esports. The company raised $10 million in a Series A funding round this month, led by Alinea Capital.
“Funspark is honored to be a part of the circuit, and bringing an international platform and high prize money to all Chinese CS:GO players,” Zi Zhang, the CEO of Funspark said.
Other Esports Business News:
- Chinese live streaming platform Huya signed a 2.01 billion yuan ($310 million), five-year exclusive media rights deal with TJ Sports. The deal includes broadcasting, video-on-demand, and distribution rights of all Chinese League of Legends competitions and events, including League of Legends Pro League (LPL), League of Legends Development League (LDL) and LPL All-Star events.
- Wuhan-based LPL team Rare Atom (RA) announced Wednesday that the team signed a sponsorship deal with Huya. RA’s team players will also stream on Huya. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.
- German production company and tournament organizer ESL Gaming announced that the company has renewed its partnership with Chinese live-streaming platform Douyu, which has been granted the exclusive rights to broadcast ESL Pro Tour CS:GO, Warcraft III, StarCraft II, Dota 2 and ESL Mobile competitions this year.