Esports are a rapidly growing industry and those with money continue to look to invest in up and coming teams. Recently, a new investor has taken an interest in this growing market except this time, it’s just not one lone investor; it’s an entire city.
The city of Washington D.C. has decided to sponsor eSports team NRG. The announcement was recently made by Events D.C. the city’s local convention and sports authority.
NRG is an eSports team that has professional players in Overwatch, Rocket League, Super Smash Bros., and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to name just a few. The team was founded by Andy Miller and Mark Mastrov, the co-owners of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings, and has also recently received investments from former professional athletes like Alex Rodriguez, Shaquille O’Neal, and Jimmy Rollins.
This new sponsorship means that NRG will now feature D.C. logos on their jerseys, streams and website. D.C. will also provide the location for NRG bootcamps, where players can come together and practice for long periods of time.
Events D.C. Chairman Max Brown talked about this new sponsorship and highlighted the city’s youth when talking about why the decision was made to sponsor NRG.
We have a bunch of universities here in Washington. There are lots of younger kids who are here and are coming here every year through our universities so we think it makes a lot of sense for us as a city to plant a flag [for eSports], and ultimately be the capital of eSports like we’re the capital of the United States.
While the sponsorship seems strange at first, it actually does make a lot of sense for the city to make this decision. More investors – most notably the Philadelphia 76ers – have begun partnering with eSports teams within the last couple months so I guess it was only a matter of time until a sponsor like this jumped in as well.