FTX Trading Ltd. and West Realm Shires Services Inc. owners and operators of FTX.COM and FTX.US respectively (collectively “FTX” or “The Company”), and the League Championship Series (LCS), the largest professional esports league, in the world’s most-watched esport: League of Legends, have struck a historic seven-year sponsorship agreement ahead of this weekend’s 2021 LCS Playoffs competition at their studio in Los Angeles. The partnership makes FTX the Official Cryptocurrency Exchange of the LCS and represents the largest and longest sponsorship agreement Riot has ever signed for an esports league.
As cornerstones of the partnership, FTX will present the newly revamped “LCS Most Improved Player Award” and the most valuable currency in the game, Gold, will be rebranded as FTX Gold throughout all League Championship Series gameplay. Additionally, player net worth, total team gold, and gold graphs will be presented by FTX.
“As someone who enjoys League of Legends both during my spare time and occasionally during work hours, I’m really looking forward to tuning into the LCS Playoffs this weekend to see the unveiling of our partnership,” said Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX. “It’s another sign of how far we’ve come in such a short time, and we look forward to working closely with the team to share the crypto industry we love with a community of like-minded gamers that I’m proud to consider myself a part of.”
FTX’s partnership with the LCS marks a major investment in the rapidly growing esports space in the United States. The massive sponsorship agreement comes on the heels of other recent strategic partnerships in the sports industry, including FTX becoming the Proud Crypto Partner of Major League Baseball and securing the naming rights for the Miami Heat arena, rebranded as FTX Arena. In June, FTX announced that six-time Super Bowl Champion Tom Brady and supermodel Gisele Bundchen took an equity stake as part of a long-term partnership that includes a commitment to philanthropic efforts, a staple of Bankman-Fried’s mission of effective altruism. In April, the exchange also partnered with the No. 1 NFL Draft pick Trevor Lawrence, who made history by receiving a significant signing bonus entirely in cryptocurrency in connection with the FTX partnership.
LCS Playoffs begin this weekend with Evil Geniuses versus Dignitas (Saturday at 2 pm PT), followed by Cloud9 versus Team Liquid (Sunday at 1 pm PT). Catch all the action on Twitch, YouTube, LoLEsports, or with your favorite Watch Party streamer.