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HP and Intel are teaming up to sponsor Blizzard Entertainment’s Overwatch League, the official esports league based on its popular shooter with 35 million monthly active players.
Thanks to its fast growth, Overwatch has become one of the world’s biggest shooter games, and its league is drawing lots of attention and investor interest. HP said that its Omen by HP gamer PC brand will be a multi-year sponsor for the league, which is setting up regional teams that will battle with each other. HP and Intel made the announcement at Blizzard’s big fan event, BlizzCon 2017, in Anaheim, California. Esports is expected to be a $1.5 billion market by 2020, according to market researcher Newzoo.
The sponsorship means that Omen by HP computers and displays will be used exclusively for Overwatch League games, and those computers will use Intel’s latest Core i7 and i9 processors. The league play gets under way on December 6 with a preseason event and then it officially kicks off on January 10. So far, there are 12 inaugural city-based teams across Asia, Europe, and North America. Overwatch League teams such as Cloud9 and Seoul Dynasty have been revealing their team rosters and other details to stoke interest in the league.
“Working with Blizzard Entertainment as a global technology partner of the Overwatch League is the perfect way to celebrate esports talent and showcase our hardware within the competitive gaming arena,” said Alex Craddock, global head of marketing for personal systems at HP, in a statement. “Omen hardware has been widely adopted by many of the world’s top esports professionals, and we’re thrilled to help power the gameplay for the Overwatch League.”
In June, HP also teamed up with Blizzard to be the official PC of the Overwatch World Cup, which will take place at BlizzCon.
“We’re thrilled to be joining forces with HP and Intel to ensure that the teams competing professionally in Overwatch are equipped with top-end technology,” said Pete Vlastelica, CEO of Blizzard Entertainment’s MLG, in a statement. “Multi-year collaborations such as this illustrate the momentum behind the Overwatch League as well as a long-term commitment by us and our partners in what we see as the future of esports.”
Both HP and Intel will sponsor future Overwatch competitive events in addition to the Overwatch League.
“Intel is a longtime supporter of the esports community and we’re always looking for ways to help improve how they play, watch, and compete. We’re proud to sponsor the Overwatch League and equip all competition PCs with the latest Intel Core i7 processors to contribute to a great experience for fans and competitors,” said John Bonini, vice president and general manager of the VR, gaming, and esports group at Intel, in a statement. “The Overwatch League will be a great showcase of the future of esports, and we’re excited to be a part of it with Blizzard.”
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