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With local major tournaments and leagues wrapped up for the year, the fourth quarter in the Oceanic (Australia, New Zealand) region can often be a quieter period of negotiations ahead of the new year. But this past month a number of new partnerships and launches made for a busy October.
New Zealand sees a big new League of Legends tournament open for registrations, Sydney’s Esports High Performance Centre enters a new partnership with payment platform Neosurf, fighting game organization CouchWarriors expands to four Australian cities, and online esports platform Mogul adds multiple new partnerships and a new ladder system.
A growth in collaboration and partnership between organizations weaves through a number of announcements, with a heightened sense that a small region grows faster when people work together.
Every month The Esports Observer presents the biggest esports business news in ANZ (Australia, New Zealand), including investments, acquisitions, sponsorships, and other major news from the region.
New Zealand Gets Big League of Legends NZ Champions Tournament
A new League of Legends tournament has been announced for New Zealand players, with open registration for up to 96 teams starting in November.
The 2020 New Zealand Champions event is offering the biggest prize pool in the island nation’s history, with $100K NZD ($63.5K USD) on offer with prizes distributed from all the way through the field, with even 25th-96th placed teams each receiving a little over $250. Should more than 96 teams register, a one-day elimination series will be held ahead of the main competition series.
The competition will take place across three stages, culminating in live event semifinals and finals on May 30-31, 2020. First place will receive $12.8K, second $6.4K, and third and fourth each receiving $3.2K.
The competition is being organized by New Zealand Esports, described as “a team of passionate esports fans” with an aim to grow the New Zealand esports scene. The tournament is sponsored by events production company EventsCraft, technology company MSI, and Auckland PC hardware retailer PlayTech.
Esports High Performance Centre Secures Neosurf Partnership
The Esports High Performance Centre (EHPC) in Sydney, Australia, has announced a new partnership with online cash payment service Neosurf. EHPC is an esports training venue housed at the Sydney Cricket Ground, one of Australia’s most iconic sports venues.
EHPC is owned by Guinevere Capital, which is also the owner of esports teams Excel Esports in the League of Legends European Championship (based in the UK), the Sydney Dropbears Overwatch Contenders team, and FIFA team N8 Esports. The company also has a strategic partnership with new Australian Dota 2 organization Team Oracle, which is not based in the EHPC itself but in Perth, Western Australia, for its better digital proximity to South East-Asian servers.
Guinevere also owns Oceanic Pro League team Dire Wolves, but has signaled it intends to divest itself of this team due to Riot Games’ policy of not allowing a single organization to own two teams that could potentially meet at an international tournament.
The EHPC partnership with Neosurf extends to sponsorship of all teams associated with the center, and all related team e-commerce platforms will be updated to support Neosurf payments. Other sponsorship activations will include potential scholarship opportunities and bootcamps for up-and-coming players.
CouchWarriors Expands to New Australian Cities
Australian fighting game community esports organization CouchWarriors is expanding its footprint, adding South Australia and New South Wales to its supported regions. CouchWarriors began in Melbourne, Victoria, in 2006 and added events in Brisbane, Queensland, last year.
The expansion derives from a partnership with two other FGC (fighting game community) organizations, Adelaide FGC and Sydney Smash, who will now run tournaments under the CouchWarriors banner.
The previous expansion to Brisbane was seen to grow the Brisbane community through the unified banner and added support of a larger organization – CouchWarriors claims average regular attendance at live Queensland events has grown to 160 community members – with hopes for similar growth in other communities in Sydney (New South Wales) and Adelaide (South Australia).
The announcement sees monthly events being immediately promoted in both cities, and major tournaments have also been announced for both cities in December 2019 in Adelaide and in March 2020 in Sydney. An end of year CouchWarriors Melbourne major tournament, CouchWarriors Crossup, is set to take place on Dec. 14.
All tournaments are designed to feed into a points system for the annual Battle Arena Melbourne (BAM), where winners across various FGC esports can win a trip to compete at Evo in Las Vegas.
CouchWarriors is an incorporated not-for-profit association, designed as a system to impartially support and grow the region’s fighting game community rather than as a commercial enterprise.
Mogul Announces New Partnerships, Ladders
Online tournament and matchmaking platform Mogul has made a flurry of announcements through October, with new partnerships and competition formats being launched on its platform for Australian and South East Asian esports competitors.
In its biggest new partnership, Mogul is working with Team Secret as a platform for the esports organization to run tournaments for its fan community across a wide range of esports. Mogul has also announced partnerships with Australian Esports League to be the platform for its tournaments, which focus on school, university, and corporate categories, as well as the Girl Gamer Oceania festival.
One further partnership sees Mogul work with SG Esports, owner of League of Legends Oceanic Pro League team Gravitas. Together they are supporting competitions for Australian League of Legends community group Summoners’ Society, running weekly 1v1 and 5v5 tournaments for its 11,000 strong membership base.
The Mogul platform has also added ranked ladder options for Australia, New Zealand, and South East Asian players to participate in more structured competitive play. ANZ competitions will run across CS:GO, League of Legends, Tekken 7, and Fortnite. SEA competitions will also include CS:GO and League of Legends, plus Hearthstone, Arena of Valor, and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang.
Esports Rising – Nov. 14 | Who Is Attending?
Esports organizations in the likes of Team Liquid, 100 Thieves, Gen G. Game developers, including Riot Games and Blizzard. Non-endemic sponsors such as adidas, Anheuser-Busch InBev, and Jack in the Box and more. Sponsored by Lagardère Sports, and presented by Sports Business Journal / Daily, with support of The Esports Observer.
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