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The esports company FaZe Clan has cut a sports betting deal with DraftKings.
The deal could help both companies reach new audiences, and that’s important at a time when FaZe is attempting to go public through a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), which would value the company at $1 billion.
Boston-based DraftKings will become the official sports betting, internet gambling, daily fantasy, and free-to-play partner of FaZe Clan, which has positioned itself as a gaming, lifestyle, and media brand.
FaZe’s strategy is to go beyond esports and become more a content creation company, and creating content related to sports betting is a bit of a brand risk. But the combination of esports and gambling has the potential to generate a lot of money, and, evidently, FaZe Clan is recognizing that as it plans to go public. Trading for the SPAC has been a little iffy lately, observers said.
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Upcoming content activations will feature several of FaZe Clan’s biggest and brightest content creators, including FaZe Adapt, FaZe Temperrr, FaZe Nate Hill, FaZe Swagg, Nuke Squad, and more.
“FaZe Clan is a juggernaut of internet engagement and culture, built from the ground up into one of the most influential esports and content organizations in the world,” said Matt Kalish, president of DraftKings North America, in a statement. “The strong crossover between DraftKings customers and FaZe’s tens of millions of viewers and followers made this a natural alliance, and we hope to create excitement, competition, and community around sports and video games for adult audiences everywhere we operate.”
As part of the deal, DraftKings will appear across FaZe’s digital content ecosystem, including custom content, livestream and tournament events, plus new IP and formats highlighted by original series and a new planned podcast. Also, DraftKings will have a presence at upcoming FaZe Clan events with access to FaZe Clan talent, as well as a variety of digital and social media content.
The deal will bring experiences for DraftKings customers and FaZe Clan fans alike including custom contests, pools and tournaments, merchandise, and more. Additionally, FaZe Clan will work alongside DraftKings to develop educational content that raises awareness for responsible gaming.
The deal will also increase DraftKings’ presence in esports, becoming the official sponsor of FaZe Clan’s Counter-Strike esports team. To date, DraftKings offers esports daily fantasy contests ranging across Call of Duty, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2, League of Legends, Rocket League, and Valorant. As the official sponsor of FaZe Clan’s Counter-Strike team, DraftKings will have logo placement on team jerseys and additional placements on team and player official channels as well as content.
“We are committed to delivering content we know our fans are passionate about,” said FaZe Clan CEO Lee Trink, in a statement. “The DraftKings deal is a natural move for FaZe Clan as our members and fans are avid followers of traditional sports, and this gives us the opportunity to further propel our talent and brand into the mainstream. Both brands also share an important vision of being at the forefront of internet culture and we believe this partnership marks an important cultural crossover moment for the future of sports and entertainment.”
To kick off the collaboration, DraftKings hosted FaZe Clan members in a suite at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles for the Los Angeles Rams vs Arizona Cardinals game on October 3.
Of course, gambling can be a touchy subject. DraftKings said it remained committed to providing a safe and responsible gaming (RG) platform. In August, DraftKings launched its nonfungible tokens (NFT) marketplace for various NFT collectible drops. NFTs use the transparent and secure digital ledger of blockchain to authenticate unique digital items.
FaZe was founded in 2010 for Gen Z and Millennial esports fans. Now it reaches more than 350 million people on social platforms.
FaZe Clan recently announced plans to go public through a merger with B. Riley Principal 150 Merger Corp. (NASDAQ: BRPM), a SPAC.