In the wake of several rumors, the Madison Square Garden Company has officially confirmed its acquisition of a controlling stake in Counter Logic Gaming.
The premium brand in the world of traditional sports owns the New York Knicks in the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the New York Rangers in the National Hockey League (NHL). It also owns its own venue by the same name–Madison Square Garden, which was used to host the Summer Split finals of the 2015 North American League Championship Series (LCS) and was incidentally won by Counter Logic Gaming itself.
This is the first time that the Madison Square Garden Company has invested in an esports brand. It not only signals a diversification of its portfolio but also others about the trending new business opportunity that is taking the world by storm. The competitive aspect of video games continues to surge in popularity and respect.
David O’Connor, President and CEO of The Madison Square Garden Company said:
In 2015, Madison Square Garden hosted the sold-out North American League of Legends Championship Series Summer Finals – a first for The World’s Most Famous Arena, and a sign that esports was ready to command sports’ biggest stage. Since then, as we have been actively exploring opportunities to enhance MSG’s portfolio of live experiences, we have been keenly interested in esports as a natural extension of our core business. The sport now stands on the verge of enormous change, which we believe has the potential to generate significant growth.
Counter Logic Gaming was founded in 2010 by George “HotshotGG” Georgallidis as a professional League of Legends team. Since then, the organization has expanded into various other games, including Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Super Smash Bros. Most recently, the esports organization picked up its first non-endemic sponsor in the shape of 5-Hour Energy.