TSM may sell its LCS franchise spot amid financial struggles, according to report

TSM's stake in esports could be going on the back burner.

Photo by Colin Young-Wolff via Riot Games

Legendary esports organization TSM will be putting its esports efforts on hold across multiple games, according to a report from Kevin Hitt of the Sports Business Journal. The pausing of TSM’s esports branches could end the franchise’s stake in various scenes, including VALORANT, Apex Legends, and potentially its flagship title, League of Legends.

TSM could be putting its League team “on the block,” according to SBJ, indicating that a potential sale of its franchised slot in the LCS could possibly be in the works.

TSM was one of the original franchises to be inducted into the LCS when it was christened in 2013 and is one of two organizations to compete in every split of the LCS (alongside longtime rivals CLG). Last summer, it was reported that the franchise had considered leaving the North American League scene and relocating to Europe. And with today’s report, that door has possibly reopened, according to SBJ.

Last year, TSM’s 10-year, $210 million naming rights deal with cryptocurrency exchange FTX fell through when the company filed for bankruptcy. According to Hitt’s report, that deal significantly hindered TSM’s finances and could be a reason why the organization is looking to put its esports ventures on hold.

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Following a disappointing finish in the recent LCS Spring Split, TSM parted ways with general manager Glen Yang and team manager Kristine Huang. Those changes came just one week after TSM COO Walter Wang left the organization. It’s unknown at this time to what extent TSM will be overhauling its esports efforts, although a complete departure from the esports industry altogether isn’t off the table, according to SBJ’s report.

Dot Esports has reached out to TSM for comment.

About the author
Michael Kelly

Staff Writer covering World of Warcraft and League of Legends, among others. Mike's been with Dot since 2020, and has been covering esports since 2018.