BMW partners with top esports teams

Non-esports related brands investing in esports or partnering with esports teams isn’t anything new – there are plenty of partnerships with energy drink providers, hardware manufacturers and more. Car manufacturers are a little more of a rarity when it comes to esports investments – nevertheless, it’s a step that some companies have taken.

It’s easy to see why – esports is an ever-booming billion-dollar industry with plenty of investors and participants. Partnering up for added exposure is a good move – and it’s one that BMW took. Not for the first time either; In 2017, BMW partnered with the Paris League of Legends European finals. Now things are going one step further.

BMW partners with top esports teams

© BMW – United in Rivalry

United in rivalry

“United in rivalry” is the official motto of the partnership that BMW just entered – or rather, of the multiple partnerships. While often brands will back either one specific esports event series and sponsor it, or one specific organisation, BMW took a different approach.

They partnered with five of the world’s biggest and well-known esports organisations – rivalling organisations. The five teams they chose are the US-based Cloud 9, UK-based Fnatic, Chinese Funplus Phoenix, German G2 Esports and the South Korean T1.

Each of these teams has around 200 players in their rosters – and they have a particularly strong presence in LoL. Of course that’s not all. These teams also field players in games like Dota 2, FIFA, Rocket League or CS:GO – BMW really went for a diverse spread here.

A unique partnership

As if this cross-team partnership wasn’t unique enough, it’s terms make it even more special. The partnership is actively encouraging the teams rivalries. This includes mini-challenges and other attempts to outdo each other before matches in which they meet each other.

They even coined the hashtag #unitedinrivalry for this purpose – so the teams can share their little wind-ups. It’s supposed to improve motivation, entertain the fans and play on the historic rivalries between the teams.

In the current situation, there is a second hashtag to go with the first #unitedathome. As currently interactions are virtual only and games are happening remotely, this second hashtag will accompany the first.

Another cool extra – the BMW commitment includes a provision for official team vehicles. Each organisation will receive a team car with specially designed decals and livery for their team. It’ll probably be some time before each team can debut their cars properly, but the wait will hopefully be worth it – it’s an incredibly cool sponsor item to receive.

Partnering teams equally excited

“T1 is thrilled to partner with BMW to elevate innovation and entertainment in the gaming industry. […] The T1 family are excited to create content, products, and programmes with the BMW team that showcase our shared values of competitiveness and premier performance for esports fans and enthusiasts around the world.”  Says Joe Marsh,  the CEO of T1.

“At Fnatic we are dedicated to maximising performance and entertainment through technology and innovation. It is these shared values that make BMW the perfect partner as we seek to level-up every gamer on the planet. As a pioneer in the automotive space, with a history of advancing entertainment in competitive sport and working with the best talent and teams, we are thrilled to be working with BMW to build the future of esports and entertainment together.” Said Glen Calvert, the COO of Fnatic.

“We’re thrilled to expand our partnership with BMW to the global front and continue to uphold shared pillars of excellence and peak performance. We welcome the outstanding teams that we’ll work alongside to drive competitive excellence forward with BMW!” says Jack Etienne, Cloud9 CEO & Co-Founder.

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