As can be seen in the infographic above ESL and their partner Twitch already have considerable accomplishment behind them. With 40,000,000+ unique viewers tuning in to one of ESL's 20+ language streams during 2013 and with people from over 180 countries serviced since 2011, ESL has managed to take full advantage of the rise of easy accessibility of streamed esports content. Their massive growth from 2011 until 2013 is indicative of just what a difference companies such as Twitch have made for the eSports landscape.
Over the past few years ESL has quickly become one of the most successful tournament organizers esports has ever known. After hitting a rough spot some five years ago the company has turned around its finances and entered into a new age of growth, expanding into new countries and games, and the majority of this growth has come during the age of Twitch, with ESL being one of the most consistent companies delivering high quality tournaments on the platform.
This news is yet another positive announcement for ESL who've been going from strength to strength in recent times, especially announcing the expansion of their operations in North America and the buildup of capacity to hold live events through their full TV production level studio in Los Angeles, California. ESL also holds some of the most lucrative contracts in eSports, including World of Tank's Wargaming League Europe as well as the highly prestigious StarCraft 2 World Championship Series. The tournament organizer has also built up their own premier brands, with Intel Extreme Masters being the most well known.
The next challenge for ESL to tackle together with their new partners in Twitch is the upcoming ESL One Frankfurt tournament for Dota 2, attempting to fill football stadion in Germany with European Dota fans. ESL One Frankfurt will take place from 28th to 29th of June in the Commerzbank Arena with the prizepool for the event currently sat just under $200,000 USD. The event will be streamed exclusively on Twitch.
According to the press release the deal includes far-reaching content and co-marketing collaboration worldwide, including Twitch being the exclusive Western world broadcaster for all ESL events. ESL will also use Twitch to air the ninth season of Intel® Extreme Masters, events from gamescom 2014, the ESL One Frankfurt 2014, and in ESL’s studios in Europe and North America.
“We are a pioneer within the industry by creating the most epic and magical moments possible,” said Ralf Reichert, CEO and Managing Director at ESL. “A big part of this is communicating and sharing an event’s atmosphere in high definition to thousands of eSports fans at home unable to attend. This wouldn’t be possible without Twitch and the power of its platform.”
“ESL has created a premium esports product at worldwide scale and are a top example of the premium gaming content available on Twitch," said Stuart Saw, Regional Director, EMEA, Twitch. “They have a passion for games and have built a great community. And when you look at their record setting numbers and international reach, they are clearly one of the key players in the esports industry.”