Epic Esports Events have named Chinese car brand Haval as the exclusive automotive partner of their EPIC League.
The Dota 2 league kicked off on October 29, with teams in the first division from Europe and the CIS region competing for $500,000.
Haval will sponsor the broadcast of the competition, displaying their logo on-stream to advertise their cars to Dota 2 fans.
The organizations that make up the first division are Alliance, Natus Vincere, Nigma, OG, Team Liquid, Team Secret, Vikin.gg, and Virtus.pro.
Haval entered esports in July 2020 when they partnered with Russian organization Virtus.pro, specifically focusing on their Dota 2 team.
EPIC League organizers Epic Esports Events are owned by ESforce Holding, the same company that owns and operates Virtus.pro. Production studio RuHub and news publication Cybersport.ru are also under the same ownership.
“We are delighted to see Haval among our partners at the new Epic Esports Events tournament again,” Sergey Barkhudarian, the commercial director of ESforce Holding. “The brand burst onto the esports scene brightly and already managed to win many esports fans’ hearts in different disciplines. Advanced esports audience is interested in the technological automotive innovations of Haval.
“EPIC League will be the largest and the most interesting tournament to conclude the esports year in Dota 2. We are confident that Haval activations will make it even brighter, more technological and stronger for our audience.”
— EPICENTER (@epicentergg) November 2, 2020
Automotive brands have been looking to esports to advertise to a young, technology-savvy demographic for years now — though activity has increased dramatically over the last couple of years.
In October 2020, Mazda entered the industry through a deal with HellRaisers. Other car brands in esports include Audi with Astralis Group, Honda with Riot Games’ LCS and Team Liquid, McLaren with DragonX, and Kia with the LEC and Rogue.