Verizon is taking another step into esports as it is becoming a lead sponsor of esports organization FaZe Clan. FaZe Clan, which includes competitive players, more than 80 influencers and content creators, and celebrities like Pittsburgh Steelers receiver JuJu Smith Schuster and rapper Offset, recently passed 1 billion views combined across YouTube. The organization has partnerships with brands like Beats by Dre and Nissan, and also worked with the NFL on an exclusive merchandise line and its 2020 “Draft-A-Thon.”
Focusing its esports efforts around promoting its 5G technology, Verizon also partnered with Riot Games’ League of Legends last month. The deals come as the company announced an overall second quarter revenue decrease of 5.1% compared to last year.
With traditional sports shut down, there has been a shift in brand spending towards esports. The NBA 2K League, Overwatch League and Call of Duty League all brought on new partners in recent months, and major brands like AT&T, Honda and Bud Light have continued or expanded on their esports investments.
With an estimated 2.4 billion gamers globally – many of which are Gen Z and millennials – the industry is attractive for sponsorship spending.
Brands have plenty of room to grow esports spending, according to Adweek:
— $1.5 billion in esports
— $59.4 billion in TV
— $15.7 billion in streaming