While the past week didn’t see much happening in the Chinese esports industry, this week it witnessed major deals and partnerships between big brands and esports organizations. In line with this, the Chinese esports company, Bilibili Esports entered a strategic partnership with Activision Blizzard. Along with this the Overwatch League also announced that it would be returning with live events in China.
Bilibili Esports and US-based video game publisher Activision Blizzard have signed a multi-year deal wherein the brand will strategically cooperate with each other. Bilibili Esports is a part of the Chinese live-streaming platform, Bilibili. This partnership between the two companies will be to improve the production, promotion, distribution, and commercialization of the Overwatch League otherwise known as OWL to Chinese audiences.
The announcement was made in a joint statement and will result in Bilibili Esports replacing Banana Culture as OWL’s new production partner. They will also receive exclusive media rights to the live stream and the on-demand content for the league.
Bilibili Esports is one of the most popular video sharing platforms in China, especially among the current generation. The company has managed to obtain media rights to broadcast popular esports championships like League of Legends World Championships and the Overwatch Contenders.
Many esports competitions in China were suspended or even postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, leagues such as the Overwatch League are bringing back their live events for the fourth season of the competition. However, the event will only feature limited events for safety reasons.
OWL assured that it would do its best to adhere to the rules and regulations set by the Chinese government and prioritize the health and safety of the fans, players and the staff members. The OWL competitions in Europe, North America, and South Korea will be played remotely. Since live audience and city-based franchises are a big part of the league’s business, its future continues to remain uncertain due to the current situation of the pandemic.
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