An acclaimed streaming platform is getting into the e-sports game. BAMTech, which was formed out of the video wing of Major League Baseball’s MLB Advanced Media, has inked a $300 million deal with Riot Games through which it will distribute content based around the game developer’s hit title League of Legends.
The deal between BAMTech and Riot Games will begin to bear fruit in 2017, when the former company will distribute and monetize several League of Legends tournaments and events. In addition to its own proprietary technology, BAMTech will also make use of platforms like YouTube and Twitch for its forthcoming e-sports content.
League of Legends, in which two teams do battle across a multi-“lane” virtual map, has often ranked as the most popular e-sport on Twitch. Its 2016 championship tour, according to Riot Games, attracted more than 43 million unique viewers.
“BAMTech has designed, developed and distributed world-class fan viewing experiences to millions worldwide across its many traditional sports, news and entertainment partners,” reads a post from Riot Games announcing the deal. “We’re proud to represent their first step in the esports world and in partnership plan to create innovative and rich ways to add to fans’ existing options for viewing their League of Legends esports content.”
After earning praise for its digital broadcasts of MLB games, BAMTech became a preferred streaming partner for companies like the NHL, the WWE, and HBO. It is partially owned by Disney, which invested a billion dollars into the streaming technology platform earlier in 2016. As part of that deal, ESPN plans to team with BAMTech to create a subscription-video service for sports fans.