Fun88, the Asian bookmakers who sponsor football club Newcastle United, have entered esports through a deal with OG.
The two-time champions of The International, the best-paying tournament series in esports, have signed a multi-year partnership with the betting company.
The partnership will see Fun88 work with the organization to “bring fans closer to the Dota 2 action” through community interactions and “pre-play, real-time, and post-match insights.”
The bookmakers will also have their logo shown on the shoulder of jerseys worn by the legendary Dota 2 players.
OG’s well-known roster includes Johan ‘N0tail’ Sundsteni, Martin ‘Saksa’ Sazdov, Sébastien ‘Ceb’ Debs, Topias ‘Topson’ Taavitsainen, and Yeik ‘MidOne’ Nai Zheng.
They are the current defending world champions having won The International in both 2018 and 2019, with this year’s iteration of the tournament being delayed due to the global health situation.
“OG Esports’ legacy and story in Dota is one of the most legendary stories in esports and, because of this, we have been able to break into the mainstream and our story has been documented in many mediums — articles, magazines, and several documentaries,” JMR Luna, CEO of OG, told Dexerto. “Following this trajectory, OG has become the breach for new non-endemic companies that want to break into this space.”
“Fun88 have a great track record and have really invested in traditional sports, this is the next step for them as they recognize that some of the biggest competitions in the world right now are happening behind screens,” he continued. “This is a great moment for esports because we’re welcoming a new massive brand into our ecosystem which ultimately benefits everyone. We’ve worked really hard to make this happen and we’re happy we can finally announce it.”
Outside of esports, Fun88 have worked with late basketball icon Kobe Bryant and football club Tottenham Hotspur. In July 2020, they extended their sponsorship deal with Newcastle United for an undisclosed period of time.
Betting sponsors may not be new in esports, but this is the first rodeo for Fun88.