Esports team Tempo Storm announced today that it’s partnered with Red Bull. Its other sponsors include companies such as the technology company Nvidia, along with livestreaming platform Twitch and its subsidiary, Curse, which produces voice over internet protocol tools and runs popular gaming websites.
Red Bull’s become an esports fixture, hosting tournaments and investing in a high-tech esports lab where its sponsored athletes can practice. Earlier this year, it pulled its sponsorship from teams Cloud9 and Team SoloMid, according to ESPN. This is because it conflicted with the rules of sponsorship set by League of Legends developer Riot Games. At that time, Red Bull was already discussing a potential partnership with Tempo Storm.
“This partnership with Red Bull is something we’ve been working on for a very long time, and I couldn’t be more excited to get started,” said Tempo Storm’s CEO Andrey “Reynad” Yanyuk in an announcement video. “Red Bull has been doing amazing stuff in the space with event production, content creation, and athlete performance; I can’t wait to do more of that stuff directly with them, now that Tempo Storm and Red Bull are officially working together.”
Yanyuk founded Tempo Storm in 2014, and he was a hugely influential player in the early days of Blizzard’s hit digital card game Hearthstone. He invented several popular decks, such as the Zoo Warlock, and he’s a frequent commentator for Hearthstone esports events (and vocal on YouTube).
Tempo Storm now has teams competing across a variety of games in addition to Hearthstone; multiplayer online battle arenas Heroes of the Storm and Riot’s League of Legends; shooters Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Overwatch; and fighting games, such as Super Smash Bros. Melee. It recently added a team for the popular battle royale PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and it also plays the mobile MOBA Vainglory competitively.
The esports industry is predicted to hit $696 million in revenues this year and eventually grow to $1.5 billion in 2020. Red Bull isn’t the only brand who’s trying to get in on the action; earlier this year, Pepsico’s Mountain Dew announced partnerships with Team Dignitas, Splyce, and Team SK Gaming.