From sponsorships to industry-wide announcements, Insider Sport has you covered when it comes to the world of esports.

This week’s edition highlights the latest developments in the esports sector, including Rocket League Esports and Ally Financial Inc expanding an existing sponsorship to focus on offering more opportunities to women in esports.

Rocket League Esports & Ally provide platform for women

Rocket League Esports and Ally Financial Inc, a digital financial company, have expanded a sponsorship to focus on offering more opportunities to women in esports.

Under the agreement, Ally and Rocket League Esports will deliver three women-only tournaments and a co-ed main event across 2024, with a total prize pool of $75,000 up for grabs.

Additionally, this expanded sponsorship will see a continued investment in opportunities and events for women in Rocket League Esports, aligning with Ally’s 2022 pledge to reach 50/50 media spend across men’s and women’s sports, including esports

Alexander Lewin, SVP for Commercial Revenues at BLAST, said: “We have some exciting plans lined up for 2024 as we look to deepen our sponsorship with Ally by further focusing on providing a platform for women to excel in esports and gaming.”

“Ally’s commitment to creating opportunities for women in Rocket League Esports is unwavering and we are extremely proud to support this ambition through delivering four fantastic tournaments for both the North American and European regions.

Bridget Sponsky, Executive Director of Brand and Sponsorship Marketing at Ally, commented: “By fostering relationships with women gamers we’ve learned what their needs are and how to create valuable opportunities for them.”

Gamer computer on line in internet cafe.
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VCT Masters Madrid announces viewership record

VALORANT’s VCT 2024: Masters Madrid has cemented its position in becoming the game’s most-watched tournament ever.

According to esports Esports Charts, the event attracted 1.66 million peak viewers and around 671,000 average viewers across a 52-hour airtime.

VCT Masters Madrid was the first large-sale international LAN event of the season and marked the end of the title’s first segment in its competitive calendar.

North America’s Sentinels were crowned champions of the tournament, beating Gen.G in the grand final, which was the most popular match at the tournament, followed by Sentinels’ clashes with LOUD.

In comparison to VALORANT’s previous Masters event, Masters Tokyo, Madrid had more than double the amount of peak viewers (1.66 million compared to 830,000) and around seven million more hours watched (34.9 million compared to 27.9 million).

The next Masters tournament for the VCT is VCT 2024: Masters Shanghai in May and June this year, which will without a doubt be entered with excitement following this record-breaking event. 

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Jonas Gundersen launches investment and advisory firm ‘Continuum X Group’

Following Gundersen’s departure from the Swedish esports organisation Ninjas in Pyjamas, he has officially launched his own venture, Continuum X Group.

Continuum X Group is an investment, advisory and management firm with a special focus on the esports and gaming space. As well as founding the company, Gundersen will also take the role of CEO.

In 2020, Gundersen became COO of Ninjas in Pyjamas, where he helped grow the organisation’s operations. Prior to that role, he played professionally in the early 2000s in Counter-Strike under the nickname ‘calc’. He then became the COO of Danish esports organisation North Esports, after taking some time to explore other industries. 

Gundersen said: “My passion for esports and gaming, empowering great people and creating momentum across the entire industry has never been bigger. 

“Never felt more right creating my own company, with a mission to bring value across the entire stakeholder ecosystem through investment, strategic advisory and management.”

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German esports organisation Sprout Esports ceases operations

German esports organisation Sprout Esports has announced it has ceased operations, with the organisation noting that its existing business model ‘is no longer viable to ensure sustainable and healthy growth’.

Founded in 2017, Sprout Esports owned teams in Counter-Strike, PUBG Battlegrounds, Trackmania and sim racing. Over the last six years, the organisation won six ESL Meisterschaft tournaments and made appearances at the ELEAGUE Boston and IEM Rio CS:GO Majors.

Following an announcement on social media, all of its players and members of staff have been released from their contracts. Sprout Esports looked at ‘alternative strategies’ before deciding to close its doors, according to a statement.

However, the organisation has revealed it will continue to support its sim racing division, despite it ceasing operations. 

An excerpt of the statement reads: “One says ‘all good things must come to an end’ and here we are as much as it aches our hearts to step aside.

“We are also making space for new seedlings, in hopes to leave behind fertile grounds where new sprouts can flourish. All operations will be ceased today except for the Simracing Team, which we continue to support in another way.”

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