Esports organization Natus Vincere and Russia’s largest travel search engine, Aviasales, have locked into a sponsorship deal.
The amount and terms of the contract weren’t disclosed. Past deals were worth between $200,000 and $600,000, Na’Vi’s CEO Yevhen Zolotarov told Vedomosti. Aviasales.ru is now one of the region’s first non-endemic brands to enter in esports.
Just one month into 2017, the esports industry has already witnessed several impressive sponsorship deals with non-endemic brands . SK Gaming partnered with Visa in a high-six figure deal, while ELEAGUE Major champions Astralis teamed up with Audi, a partnership worth $700,000.
All these brands share one goal: to gain access to esports’ millennial audience, which is hard to reach via traditional channels like TV, radio, and print media.
Aviasales.ru began as a travel blog by founder Konstantin Kalinov. In 2008, when Russian airfare distribution was liberalized by allowing the sale of e-tickets, Kalinov gathered a large userbase and was well-positioned to start a travel search engine.
The website allows users to compare airline prices and offers and specializes in low cost airfare. In 2014, iTech Capital acquired a minority stake in the company with a $10 million investment. Outside of Russia, the company operates as JetRadar.
Na’Vi now has seven sponsors, including familiar names like Twitch, G2A, and HyperX. The org is also sponsored by gambling operator GG.BET, gaming chairs manufacturer DXRacer, and BenQ’s esports brand ZOWIE.