The progressing digitisation affects all areas of modern life. New, innovative forms of communication and sport are one of the consequences of this wide-reaching change. For Mercedes-Benz the triumphant advance of eSports, which has developed into a mass phenomenon, is not a fashionable flash in the pan but a form of expression for an entire generation. A generation that is actively involved in shaping the future.
In 2019 the brand from Stuttgart is taking the move of becoming the first vehicle manufacturer to invest in an eSports team. The brand’s commitment to eSports began when it became an ESL partner in 2017 and deepened in October 2018 when it became a global ESL mobility partner. Following approval from the regulatory authorities and completion of the transaction Mercedes-Benz is now becoming more actively involved in the eSports scene. The involvement in SK Gaming manifests the brand’s commitment to professional gaming as the spearhead of a global youth culture.
“We are fascinated by both the enthusiasm of this young and digital generation for professional gaming and the totally new form of media consumption and communication within the fan community. By getting involved in SK Gaming we want to participate in this dialogue – as an open-minded and interested partner”, is how Bettina Fetzer, Vice President Marketing Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars, sums up the strategic focus of the commitment. “After nearly two years of involvement in eSports we have now decided to systematically take the next step”, says Fetzer.
Within the partnership the Mercedes star will be adorning the front of the SK Gaming shirts. As well as returning to the LEC, Europe’s leading League of Legends, SK Gaming is appearing with its own teams and players in games such as FIFA, Clash Royale and Hearthstone.
Alexander Müller, CEO and co-partner of SK Gaming comments: “SK Gaming has been in existence since 1997. Over 20 years of passion, willpower and the belief that professional gaming would become a global entertainment blockbuster are now being crowned. With Mercedes-Benz as our partner we shall continue to push the boundaries of what no-one thought possible five years ago.”
As well as this history SK Gaming also has a series of wins in various genres behind it. Entering the LEC and focusing on Multiplayer Online Battle Arena games, what are known as MOBA games, such as League of Legends and mobile titles like Clash Royale, marks the beginning of an exciting chapter for the Cologne gamers: “Now it’s all about pooling our combined power, learning from one another and then putting all our horsepower on the road – we’re really looking forward to doing so.”, says Alexander Müller.
As well as the logo presence the cooperation also includes extensive content projects, joint activation opportunities and the mutual transfer of know-how.