With franchising coming soon to the Call of Duty esports, publishers Activision Blizzard are reportedly asking for $25 million for a spot in the CWL for the 2020 season.
According to ESPN, sources have claimed that Activision already have begun the sales process for this new league, setting the starting price at $25 million per franchise spot.
This will be a whopping $5 million more than the reported $20 million starting price for spot in Season 1 of the Overwatch League, the first franchised league owned and operated by Blizzard Entertainment.
Another comparison is the franchised League of Legends Championship Series. The North American league reportedly charged prospective teams $10 million to guarantee a spot.
According to some familiar with the league negotiations, Activision have been holding meetings over the past week with organizations that may be interested in purchasing a spot, including some that are currently fielding teams in the CWL and/or OWL.
As had been previously reported, owners of OWL teams that are interested will get the first right of refusal when it comes to negotiating for their respective home markets.
Aside from the price of each spot, not much else has been revealed about the way this new Call of Duty franchise league will work or where the teams will play.
The only information that has been confirmed is that the league will kick off in 2020 and will be city-based, much like the OWL, meaning that each team’s branding will be focused around their home city.
The implementation of franchising in CoD esports will represent a major restructuring of the current system, which uses a promotion-relegation format.
Under the current system, participating in the CWL Pro League is based on qualification, which means that the exact pool of 16 pro teams changes every season based on qualifier tournament results.
However, in the franchised league, organizations that have purchased a spot will not have to go through a qualification process every year and will get to hold on to their membership no matter how poorly they may do in the league.