OWL and CDL fans will now see betting as well as liquor sponsors as Activision Blizzard relaxes sponsorship rules in a change in policy according to a report.
The Overwatch League and the Call of Duty League will now allow betting and liquor sponsors, sources told The Esportsobserver. Call of Duty League’s London Royal Ravens has already announced betting website Midnite as a team sponsor.
OWL and CDL relax sponsorship rules
Activision Blizzard, which has opposed betting and liquor sponsors in its esports leagues has reportedly relaxed its stance. This means the Overwatch League and the Call of Duty League teams can now feature new sponsorship opportunities.
The Overwatch League has signed deals with liquor brands such as Bud Light in the past. But the league has not allowed individual member teams to sign deals with liquor sponsors. The change in stance will allow new sponsorship opportunities for brands as well as teams.
This is a reversal of Activision Blizzard’s policy which has stressed on teams featuring family-friendly sponsors. The Overwatch League 2021 started on April 16 and Dallas Fuel won the May Melee tournament. The League’s May Melee viewership saw a 51% increase compared to last year’s numbers although the esports lags behind other popular titles such as League of Legends and CS: GO.
London Royal Ravens sign Midnite as a sponsor
The London Royal Ravens has already announced sports and esports betting platform, Midnite, as a team sponsor. This new partnership will also include jersey sponsorship and content creation, according to the announcement.
“As a London-based esports betting operator, and huge fans of the team, it’s an honour for Midnite to partner with the London Royal Ravens,” said Sujoy Roy, Marketing Director at Midnite. “We’ve built the best place to bet on the Call of Duty League, and as an esports-first company, we’re proud of all the community features we offer. Our UKGC license means we operate under the world’s strictest betting regulations, to offer players a sager gambling experience.”
The London Royal Ravens players will also sport the Midnite logo on their jerseys for the remainder of the 2021 CDL season. The Ravens will kick off the Stage 3 Major against Paris Legion on May 13.
With liquor and betting sponsors, Activision Blizzard’s Leagues might see a significant influx of sponsorship money as we head into the June Joust tournament.