According to the State of India Gaming Report 2022, the Indian e-sports industry is expected to grow to USD 140 million by 2027. Over the last few years, e-sports as a category gained recognition as a mainstream sport especially after being debuted as an official medal sports at various international sports platforms. To capitalize on this growing consumer category, Vodafone Idea (Vi), one of India’s leading telecom operators and Paris based Team Vitality, internationally acclaimed e-sports organization, have announced a long-term union to boost the e-sports ecosystem in India.
With this first of its kind collaboration, the two brands jointly aim to create opportunities and exposures to e-sports fans and gaming enthusiasts alike. The partnership encompasses many aspects such as brand sponsorship, content partnerships, gaming events and unique experiences at a never-seen-before scale. This will enable Vi customers to participate in e-sports and allow exclusive access to some of the popular Team Vitality tournaments and teams. This partnership will create opportunities for budding e-sports talent from across the country to have access to professional players, master classes, meet and greets with e-sports talent and many other opportunities.
Vi is known for its strong presence in the mobile games segment, offering a wide range of hyper casual mobile games to users via Vi Games on Vi App. Through this association with Team Vitality, Vi now aims to deepen its focus on e-sports in India. Vi Games in recent past forayed into the e-sports segment by hosting popular free-to-play tournaments across games like Call of Duty: Mobile, Free Fire Max, Asphalt 9, Clash Royale, etc.
Commenting on the association, Avneesh Khosla, CMO, Vi said “Gaming has always been our strategic focus area and we have continuously strived to strengthen our gaming portfolio with right partnerships and relevant offerings. Over the last few years, e-sports has revolutionized the mobile gaming arena especially with younger audiences, and hence, deepening our focus in this space was a natural progression for Vi Games. We are excited to partner with one of the leading e-sports organizations of the world - Team Vitality. Together, we aim to drive and democratize access to the e-sports ecosystem in India. In the coming months, we will introduce some exciting e-sports and other youth centric content for our consumers to experience.”
Speaking on the occasion Randall Fernandez, Managing Director, Team Vitality India said, “We are exhilarated to announce our partnership with Vi. We are at a juncture where technology will catapult gaming to the next level and eagerly look forward to our journey together. We will unlock new horizons searching for aspiring gaming talent across the length and breadth of the country, set new precedents and create indelible marks within the e-sports industry.”
Locally, Team Vitality’s all Indian Call of Duty: Mobile (CODM) team were among the top 16 teams globally who qualified and competed in the CODM World Championship 2023 that was held in Atlanta, US between December 15thand 17th. The organization previously roped in popular gaming content creators Nischay ‘Live Insaan’ Malhan, Rachit ‘Rachitroo’ Yadav, Nitin ‘Classified YT’ Chougale, Shagufta ‘Xyaa’ Iqbal and Pratik ‘Aurum’ Mehra who have a cumulative YouTube base of 20 million subscribers.
To capitalize on this upward growing industry and to build a deeper connect with consumers, Vi and Team Vitality plan to launch various gaming contests and events.