North American esports organization Team Liquid is expanding outside of esports with a partnership with the Professional Fighters League.
The mixed martial arts organization has its athletes competing in a structured season schedule, like in sports, instead of in one-off matches throughout a season. It aims to reach its audience, which is similar to esports’ audience in the 18 to 30 demographic, where they are—so that means including social media and live streaming in its marketing effort. As part of the partnership, Team Liquid players will attend events throughout the season.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive player Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken will be the first player to attend a match tonight. He’ll spread word to his nearly 43,000 Twitter followers before, and likely after, the match.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“At Team Liquid, we seek out innovative partnerships that allow us to explore new spaces,” Team Liquid co-CEO Victor Goossens said in a statement. “I fell in love with MMA 15 years ago when I was a pro Starcraft player living in Seoul. I see a lot of the same core values between our organizations with a focus on entertainment, competitive sports format and athlete-first culture.”
MMA doesn’t have a long history in esports, but the Professional Fighters League isn’t the first in its industry to get involved. In November, ONE Championship announced an initiative to invest $50 million into live events, documentaries, and weekly esports shows. Likewise, former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson was named chief brand ambassador for the organization.
H/T Esports Observer