Part of the rumored sponsorship of MasterCard having a partnership with Riot, it has been confirmed. MasterCard will sponsor League of Legends for the upcoming World Championship of 2018, signing a multi-year partnership. As cited in their news report, MSI, All-Stars and the World Championship will be the three sponsored global events.
With this partnership comes event activations with Priceless.com which will include:
- Opening ceremony rehearsal viewing and behind the scenes tours.
- VIP seats
- Testing gaming PCs that the pros will compete on during Worlds.
Owners of a Mastercard will get a unique experience at All-Stars (although details are still yet to be unveiled).
Mastercard is one of the biggest banking cards within the world, having sponsorships with PGA Tour and MLB. As apposed to their competitors, Visa, they sponsor the Olympics, NFL and FIFA.
After a stint of Riot being criticized for a lack of sponsorships, Riot has been looking to expand their monetization through means of sponsorships. Meanwhile, their rivals in Blizzard's Overwatch League have been crushing it with sponsors such as Sourpatch Kids, Toyota, HP Omen, T-Mobile and Intel. Even though League of Legends boasted a active monthly user base of 32 million, reported back in 2013, and is largely still regarded as the most popular esports in the entire world, they have struggled to reign in sponsorships and were berated for cutting budgets by disallowing their English broadcast to be sent on-site to Worlds 2018 until the Finals.
Izento has been a writer for the LoL scene since Season 7, and has been playing the game since Season 1. Follow him on Twitter at @ggIzento for more League content.