The price of a spot on the Overwatch League could be set to rise. A lot. Sources close to the League told ESPN that the price of entry could potentially triple ahead of the next season.
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Last week, Activision Blizzard confirmed that the franchise fee for the Overwatch League would be increasing for season two, but didn’t let on how expensive it would be. Sources told ESPN that the lowest expectation is somewhere in the region of $35 million - $15 million higher than the original fee of $20 million. It’s possible, however, that the figure could rise as high as $60 million, tripling the cost of a spot in the first season.
Despite the high price tag, Activision Blizzard have shown that the Overwatch League was worthy of its hefty buy-in. Despite initial scepticism about the League’s financial viability, it’s seen huge audiences since its inaugural broadcast, and has already secured a reported $117 million as well as a two-year Twitch deal, a figure that doesn’t include investment by its new sponsors, which include Toyota and T-Mobile.
With a glut of teams in North America, Blizzard will be looking to expand to Europe and Asia, where only three of the 12 League teams are currently based. A higher price-tag, combined with other deep-rooted esports such as League of Legends, could mean that the Overwatch League, very much still the new kid on the block, struggles to find further investment in these regions.