Right after one of the worst seasons in NBA history, the Philadelphia 76ers have invested in a different sport entirely.The Philadelphia 76ers have had the honor of becoming the first North American sports team to buy an eSports organization.
The 76ers have bought Team Dignitas and Apex Gaming, with Apex’s League of Legends team set to merge with Dignitas’ other teams, including Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, and Smite.
The teams will merge under the Dignitas name with the Sixers taking over the day to day running and provide infrastructure support while managing key areas such as sponsorship, branding and digital marketing.
“The eSports industry is primed for incredible growth and we are thrilled to become an owner of such a storied franchise as Team Dignitas,” said Philadelphia 76ers Managing General Partner Josh Harris.
“There is a tremendous opportunity to leverage the infrastructure, resources and experience of the Sixers organization to support these exciting teams as they continue to compete at the highest levels across multiple games.
“We see our entrance into eSports as a natural extension of our expanding interests in traditional sports and entertainment and are confident that our involvement will accelerate the already rapid pace of growth in eSports as a whole.”
eSports may be new to North America, but is already popular amongst other sporting around the world, with German Bundesliga club FC Schalke 04 and Spanish La Liga side Valencia both involved.
Dignitas is one of the oldest teams in the professional League of Legends, starting up way back in September 2011.
“This is a landmark day in eSports history and for this franchise,” said Michael O’Dell, general manager of Team Dignitas.
“Entering into a partnership with such a strong organization will give us an undeniable advantage in attracting the world’s best players and an opportunity to compete at the highest level.
“Our connection to the legendary Philadelphia 76ers brand and business organization will be a differentiating factor for Team Dignitas as we enter the next phase of our development.”
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