Esports juggernaut TSM renames itself for $210 million

Esports juggernaut TSM renames itself for $210 million

This story about lucrative deals in esports, boiled down, in 1:44 minutes.

What's the fuss?

The most valuable North American esports organization just entered into a multi-million dollar deal with a cryptocurrency exchange. This monumental event for esports rivals similar deals in traditional sports, signifying the increasing relevance of esports (and crypto).

The situation

In 2009, TSM (Team SoloMid) started as a modest community website for the internationally competitive game League of Legends

The organization's value just received a hefty boost thanks to a 10-year, $210 million deal with Hong-Kong based currency exchange FTX. 

  • As a result, the organization is officially changing their name to TSM FTX, with the FTX name being branded on jerseys and other promotional materials. 

However, the deal isn't all sunshine and roses.

    Boiling it down

    From the esports side - selling naming rights in sports isn't anything new, even in esports

    • However, this deal absolutely dwarfs the others in esports, it being similar in size to other transactions such as Citibank's deal with the Mets
    • Such a deal can bring much needed external cash to esports organizations, especially when most are not profitable.

    From the crypto side - with Bitcoin skyrocketing as of late, the newfound interest has led to an almost insurmountable level of business for these exchanges. 

    • The resulting influx of cash (and perhaps not knowing what to do with it) may have been the rationale for FTX. 
    • Gamers are generally more savvy with cryptocurrencies and are proven to be early adopters of new technologies. 
    • Thus, FTX may have used this partnership as a vehicle to appeal to new audiences, however the restrictions from Riot Games may have hampered these plans.

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