Overwatch League strikes London deal

Aug 11, 2017 · bbc.com

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The American founder of a leading e-sports business has become the first owner of a European squad in the forthcoming Overwatch League.

Jack Etienne, chief executive of Los Angeles-based Cloud9, has bought the rights to field a London team in the sci-fi video game competition.

The BBC understands he paid roughly $20m (£15.4m) for the privilege.

The league represents game producer Activision Blizzard's most ambitious venture into e-sports yet. The company believes the "family-friendly" shooter should have wider appeal to both audiences and advertisers than existing e-sports events.

It has suggested the contest could eventually become more lucrative than England's Premier League or the US's National Football League for those involved. The company will split revenues generated by the competition with each of its team owners.

"We view this as a major milestone marking the league as truly global - it now has representation in Europe, Asia and North America," Pete Vlastelica, an executive in Activision Blizzard's e-sports division, told the BBC.

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