The popular sportsbook Betway and the Swedish eSports organization Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP) announced that the 2 companies renewed their sponsorship deal, under which Betway is to re-appear among the names of NiP’s main sponsors. The 2 companies needed to part their ways, ending the long-term deal. The reason for terminating the sponsorship was that NiP met marketing restrictions enforced by Riot Games, League of Legends developer, allowing no betting advertising within its events.
Previous Sponsorship Deal between Betway and NiP
In 2016, Betway and NiP sealed a six-figure sponsorship deal with Betway’s logo attached to the Ninjas in Pyjamas jersey. The deal became known as the biggest pro-team sponsorship in eSports history. Besides all the benefits for the 2 companies, Betway would expand its popularity even more, as it was able to reach wider customer base. After the 2 companies inked the deal, NiP decided to enter League of Legends (LoL), which is Riot Games’ trademark. Hence, NiP needed to comply with Riot Games’ rules, which prohibit members of LCS (LoL Championship Series) to be sponsored by gambling sites. Moreover, Riot Games does not allow its members to promote any betting enterprises, which forced NiP to end the sponsorship deal with Betway.
The bookmaker, who stretched out its arm to the eSports sector needed to stop co-operating with NiP. This, on the other hand, invoked many negative reactions from the fans, who strongly opposed NiP’s decision to part its way with a leading bookmaker such as Betway. The sponsorship deal was terminated on 13th August this year. NiP responded that the company’s main priority is its fans’ happiness and it promised to reconsider its decision. The good news for the sponsorship renewal came during the weekend, when the company officially announced that it will continue working with Betway once its participation agreement for the League of Legends Championship Series comes to an end.
Many industry experts explained that this is in the best interests of the 2 companies, as well as of the eSports industry itself. They projected that in the coming months, NiP and Betway will most probably release innovative and original eSports content, which is to attract players’ attention. This will give a strong push forward to the development of the industry, offering one entertaining gaming atmosphere to the eSports enthusiasts. What is more is that Betway will be able to enhance its presence in the eSports market, while NiP will have the opportunity to work hand-in-glove with one of the most reputable bookmakers.