ProSiebenSat.1 forms joint venture with eSports.com via 7Sports
Munich, December 13, 2018. ProSiebenSat.1 is significantly expanding its eSports activities: 7Sports, the sports business unit of the ProSiebenSat.1 Group, is forming a joint venture with the internationally positioned eSports.com AG. With the platform of the same name, eSports.com AG brings a strong brand and a globally scalable product to the joint venture, which the two partners intend to jointly expand into the leading eSports platform in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. www.eSports.com is aimed at all eSports enthusiasts and fans. It covers all aspects of the topic as a news portal, with content ranging from highlight videos from major eSports events, editorial reports and results through to online tournaments.
With its extensive expertise in the production and marketing of sports content, 7Sports will make a significant contribution to the platform’s growth. The two partners each hold a 50 percent interest in the newly established eSports GSA GmbH, which will be jointly managed by Stefan Zant, Managing Director and COO of 7Sports, and Fabian Furch, CEO of eSports.com AG.
7Sports has been active in the area of eSports since 2016, including live broadcasts of international tournaments and a weekly highlights magazine on ProSieben MAXX. With the joint venture, 7Sports is now taking the next step in establishing a dedicated eSports ecosystem. This includes broadcasting eSports topics and events on TV as well as digital offers. Plans also include the organization of its own eSports tournaments, the establishment of eSports leagues and the management of professional sportspeople and teams. A dedicated department has already been created at 7Sports for this purpose.
eSports is the fastest-growing segment of the sports and entertainment industry. Revenues in Germany alone are expected to amount to EUR 130 million by 2020* (EUR 50 million by 2017), with the number of fans set to rise to ten million by 2021**. This makes eSports one of the most popular sports in Germany.***
Conrad Albert, Deputy CEO of ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE: “eSports are already a mass phenomenon in Asia, and the German market will see strong growth over the coming years. This is why we are stepping up our involvement and working with a strong partner in eSports.com. eSports are an excellent fit for our portfolio, as they allow us to continue to expand our entertainment offering, create additional marketing space and extend our digital reach to new target groups.”
Zeljko Karajica, CEO of 7Sports: “To date, eSports content in Germany has been largely focused on a relatively small group of heavy users. With our eSports offering on TV and digital via www.esports.com, we are addressing the mass audience of gamers and fans in order to help establish eSports as a popular sport in Germany. Our objective is clear: We want to be the market leader.”
Fabian Furch, CEO of eSports.com AG and Co-Managing Director of eSports GSA GmbH: “As far as we are concerned, the future of eSports lies in particular in expanding the target group and their broad-ranging interest in the world of digital sports. We share this vision with our partner 7Sports. We intend to become the leading platform for media content and for every kind of eSports fan. We are confident that this will allow us to actively shape the progress of eSports into the global mainstream.”
ProSiebenSat.1 Group’s entire innovative and digital sports portfolio is bundled under 7Sports. The umbrella brand for the media group’s sports business focuses on the establishment of digital sports platforms, the expansion and 360° marketing strength of exclusive sports productions, the management of young and professional athletes and premium sport events. 7Sports benefits from ProSiebenSat.1 Group’s many years of experience with popular sports brands and the successful acquisition of new platforms such as Sportdeutschland.TV and 90min. This enables ideal synergies between the individual sports segments. With ProSiebenSat.1’s marketing power in the sports sector, 7Sports is one of the most profitable platforms for sports-oriented advertisers, cooperation partners, co-investors and professional athletes in the German-speaking region. 7Sports is a ProSiebenSat.1 Sports GmbH brand.
eSports.com – the whole world of eSports:
eSports.com plans to become the world’s biggest eSports portal. The platform will take live reporting and sports journalism about eSports to a new level. Plans include online tournaments, extensive statistics and analyses, charity tournaments with celebrities, and coaching. The portal will also allow content to be shared, jointly created, rated or simply enjoyed: www.esports.com.
*Source: Deloitte, “Continue to play – Der deutsche eSports-Markt in der Analyse”, August 2018
**Source: Newzoo, eSports Market Report 2018
***Source: IfD Allensbach (2018) - Beliebteste Sportarten nach Interesse der Bevölkerung in Deutschland