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Riot Defend FTX Crypto Sponsorship Despite Limiting TSM's Partnership

Riot Games | FTX Trading Limited

Written by 

Jack Marsh

Posted 

4th Aug 2021 13:44

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Riot Games revealed a brand-new seven-year deal with cryptocurrency exchange giants FTX Trading Limited, on August 3, a deal that will see the sponsorship plastered across League of Legends Esports series around the world.

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However, the partnership comes just two months after TSM made esports history with the biggest naming rights deal that the industry has ever seen. Despite splashing the cash on a sponsorship worth $210million over ten years, TSM FTX was quickly dealt a blow from Riot Games, who limited the usage of their sponsorship in any Riot officiated event (Including League of Legends and VALORANT) due to cryptocurrency partnerships being a violation of the developers' guidelines.

Riot's contradicting stance on FTX's sponsorships was instantly questioned by figures in the industry, having just signed a deal with a partner that they'd previously restricted. 

Previously, Riot told TSM FTX that the cryptocurrency exchange's name was not allowed to be used in the name of the team during the LCS, or on their jerseys whilst competing in the same event. 

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In June, Riot Games’ Interim LCS Commissioner, Chris Greely, told Dot Esports "The TSM and FTX sponsorship deal does not break any LCS sponsorship rules, but crypto exchanges fall under a category of sponsorship that carries activation restrictions.

"As a result, TSM’s new naming convention and FTX brand placement on TSM jerseys will not apply to the LCS or other Riot Games esports in North America."

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Riot Defend FTX Crypto Sponsorship

Following their partnership with the same crypto exchange, Greely sent a statement to Andrew Hayward of Decrypt, defending the "activation" usages on broadcasting, claiming that they will be turned off in regions that forbid cryptocurrency advertisement.

Greely said, "Our partnership with FTX does not change our league-wide stance on cryptocurrency exchange sponsors.

"LCS activations with FTX can be removed from broadcast when needed in regions that limit cryptocurrency advertising. A sponsor that appears on apparel or other non-digital activation cannot."

The Riot Games and FTX partnership will see the exchange support mid-broadcast segments that will highlight the in-game currency differentials between players, and will also sponsor the LCS' MVP award.

It's not yet known how much the sponsorship is worth, although it's clear that FTX is targeting esports heavily - possibly identifying the promising market following the Gamestop craze.

 

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LoL World Championships 2021 Groups Revealed

Riot Games

Written by 

Jack Marsh

Posted 

22nd Sep 2021 13:43

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