Amazon’s Twitch wins major new esports partner
Ecommerce titan Amazon bought Twitch in 2014 for almost a billion dollars. The company was expanding its entertainment empire – which has evolved to include streaming music, streaming video on demand, and more – and wanted a route into the streaming video game market. In the five years since, that purchase has paid off. And now it looks like its going to pay off even more, as Major League Soccer (MLS) has announced a partnership with the platform that will see it host all of the League’s esports events over the next year.
Amazon’s share price has appreciated by 10% so far this year
Source: Yahoo Finance
MLS started its esports league (eMLS) last year. It’s a major effort in the new industry, featuring professional gamers kitted out in team uniforms competing through the FIFA soccer franchise from Electronic Arts Inc. This year, MLS is looking to broaden the League’s appeal, bringing in a mixture of traditional soccer fans and video gaming enthusiasts.
Chris Schlosser, the senior vice president of MLS Digital, declined to discuss the deal’s financial terms, but said: “FIFA is one of the main generators of the fans that we have. If you look at it historically – radio built baseball, television built the NFL and NBA, and the internet is building soccer.” He also added that the deal, which starts next month with the eMLS Cup, will give MLS better fan data, and more prominent placement on the platform.
On the face of it, the deal seems like a perfect fit: Twitch is a powerful platform that needs big names to expand further into esports; MSL has the youngest, and most gaming-centric, fans of all the major US sports leagues. With each consecutive eMLS broadcast drawing more fans than the last, and plans to expand into non-gaming content on the Twitch site in the works, the future looks bright for both parties involved.
Dominion holds Amazon in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.
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