Sponsor Spotlight is a monthly series here at Esports Insider that highlights the top sponsorship or partnership stories from the previous month. The main aim is to highlight some of the biggest things happening in esports, be those new non-endemic partnerships or extensions of major deals.
Big deals lead the way as we look back at June, with marvelous new partnership for Team Liquid, a partnership between Cloud9 and Microsoft, and Team Heretics‘ relationship with clothing giant adidas.
It would be hard not to include this deal as the lead deal in this article, which was revealed live during the Rift Rivals match against Fnatic. With the players walking out with new jerseys inspired by the Avengers and a Captain America shield in hand, Team Liquid really did reveal this partnership in the most epic way possible.
The main point of the partnership will see the pair sell jerseys and t-shirts that include – or are inspired by – Captain America, Iron Man, Avengers: Endgame, and the Marvel logo itself.
The partnership is definitely one that stands out from the crowd. It’s good to see two companies not just exchanging dollars and ad space but going the extra mile to create a full-blown collaborative effort.
Another major deal between two big brands also happened in June: Cloud9 and Microsoft announced a partnership that will see the latter become the technology and analytics partner of the former. The deal will span multiple years and see the two work together “develop new tools and technologies” that allow Cloud9’s players to uncover insights across a number of titles.
Speaking at the time of the announcement, Jack Etienne, CEO and Owner of Cloud9 had this to say: “As our organization looks at reaching new heights this year and next, we are incredibly excited to use the power of Microsoft technology to help get us there.”
Whilst on the other side of the deal, Mike Downey, Director of Sports Technology at Microsoft added: “Using a range of Microsoft’s commercial and consumer products and services, we will work with Cloud9 to build tools that will help them train more efficiently and determine their best strategies to win.”
Lastly, we take a look at a major sponsorship for Spanish organisation Team Heretics, who secured a deal with sportswear giant adidas. As part of the sponsorship, Team Heretics will work with adidas to develop a range of co-branded clothing that its players will practice and compete in.
Speaking at the time, Antonio Catena, CEO of Team Heretics had this to say: “Today is a very happy day for the club and all the followers of Team Heretics. We are proud to have Adidas as our new technical sponsor, the most prestigious brand in the world of sports.”
Though our final partnership of the month, Team Heretics and adidas feels like a deal that we’ll see a lot more of in future. In May, we saw Puma and Cloud9 expand its partnership and we’d expect even more clothing brands to get involved in esports, especially those with heavy ties to traditional sports.