EA says its games can win over big name brands such as Coke and Visa for the pro-gaming industry.
Although there has been an increase in non-games brands investing in eSports, many big firms have held off advertising or sponsoring major events – despite the huge audience of young people that the market attracts.
EA suspects that the industry may seem impenetrable and confusing, which is where mass-market titles such as FIFA and Madden can help. Already football clubs are investing in the market, with the likes of West Ham and Manchester City signing their own eSports players.
For non-endemic brands, this is a new space for them, and when you look at the types of games that have risen to popularity, these are not accessible titles, they're not easy to understand and maybe they don't match perfectly from a demographic stand-point with the audience they are trying to reach… or they are not consistent with the investments that these brands have already made outside of competitive gaming,” said Todd Sitrin, SVP of EA's Competitive Gaming Division.
This is a space where EA has a special opportunity. Our brands are definitely more accessible, they are PEGI 3, anyone can play these games… that's not true of a lot of eSports titles that have risen to popularity to-date.
Our IPs are safer for them to invest in and we are already mainstream. Also, a lot of these brands have already invested in the real world of sport and they see there is a complementary area that they can invest in. We have had a relationship with these types of brands worldwide for a decade, where we have had them integrated into our games, our marketing activities, and they have been chomping at the bit for EA to increase its investment in this area.
Now that we have, we are working with many of them to bring them into the space for the very first time. The games we have, and the relationships we have with these non-endemic brands, is going to unlock the part of the eSports puzzle that has yet to be solved by others.”