Team SoloMid, a popular Esports organization, announced that it will be partnering with popular trading platform FTX for the next 10 years in a deal worth 210 million dollars that will focus on expanding and evolving the team as well as Esports as a whole.
Details of the TSM FTX Deal
Part of the exclusive deal will see the organization rebranded as TSM FTX and will send crypto-based payments to its employees, while TSM itself will purchase $1million FTT, or FTX’s form of local currency.
TSM was formed in 2009 under the leadership of Andy Dinh and currently competes in 11 professional Esports. Part of the partnership between TSM and FTX will focus on heavily investing in the expansion of gaming to new areas and platforms, with a special focus on mobile gaming. Some of TSM’s most popular content creators and performers include Myth, ZexRow and Bjergsen.
Forbes declared TSM the most valuable Esports organization in the world recently, giving a valuation of $410 million for the Los Angeles, California-based company.
Founder and CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, had the following to say about his decision to partner with TSM:
“We’re really excited to work with TSM. Their team has gone above and beyond both in-game and out, and rightfully established itself as the premier team in esports.”
One of the most intriguing takeaways from this partnership between two online yet entirely different worlds is that the future of gaming and internet-based interactions looks more and more likely to revolve around cryptocurrency and resultant transactions. This accelerates a process that has swept the nation lately, whether in the rising crypto stock market or the sales of NFT’s, essentially online pieces of memorabilia that are local to a specific owner.
Unfortunately for the new partners, Riot Games executives declared that the new branding will not be displayed in its broadcasts of competitive matches in League of Legends and Valorant. League of Legends is the most-watched Esport while Valorant is a new, exciting and growing Esport, and this will limit the exposure of the brand new TSM FTX.
Riot Games has already approved the partnership for practical expansion and development but remains committed to its rules and regulations regarding partnerships with cryptocurrency-centered investors and will not show the FTX logo on team jerseys or in the team’s name.
While a next step has not been announced, it would be easy to presume that both TSM and FTX had known about the restrictions and are in a position to strike an agreement or work around the game developer’s roadblock.
The partnership between TSM and FTX is officially the largest financially that Esports has seen and opens the door to the use of crypto for in-game purchases and microtransactions, though that both companies will have to reach an agreement with game developers for this to officially happen.
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The next domino to fall would presumably be reaching other major Esports such as Call of Duty, within which TSM does not have a representative. There have been rumors of expanding the Call of Duty League from twelve teams to sixteen after this season, with three teams (Toronto Ultra, Paris Legion and London Royal Ravens) already finding homes outside of the USA. If TSM FTX is truly committed to expanding Esports across the globe as they have stated, there could be an opportunity to add another team somewhere in Europe, South America, or even Asia, though placing a team so far from the rest of the teams would create logistical problems.
Wrapping Everything Up
The exact ramifications of this deal may not be understood for some time, but what remains clear is that this is a huge deal for gaming and the digital world, and there will be more news to follow.
Grant Mitchell is a sportswriter and multimedia contributor for the Sports 2.0 Network dealing with basketball, football, soccer, and other major sports: you can connect with him on Twitter @milemitchell to stay up to date with the latest sports news and to engage personally with him.