Over the past few years, the world of esports has been steadily gaining traction in China. Luxury brands such as Tiffany & Co. are making moves in order to secure their spot in the up-and-coming gaming industry.
This week, Riot Games announced a long term partnership with the iconic jeweller to handcraft the 2022 League of Legends World Championship Trophy. The so-called “Summoner’s Cup” will be fully unveiled on August 29 across Riot Games, LoL Esports, and Tiffany & Co.’s social channels.
Since 1860, Tiffany & Co. has handcrafted timeless trophies across a variety of sports, including for the NFL. The luxury jeweller previously worked with Riot on a trial run in redesigning the Chinese LoL league’s Silver Dragon Cup.
Tiffany & Co. is not the only luxury brand looking to seize the esports market, though. In the same week as its collaboration announcement, Balenciaga (a fellow pioneer in the gaming arena) also announced its partnership with Peacekeeper Elite to create a custom uniform for the 2022 PEL Summer Finals from August 18 to 21.
One reason behind the shift in focus to esports can be attributed to the desire to reach young adults and professionals with disposable income. Following a post-pandemic drop of 23% in the global personal luxury goods market, high-end brands are now seeking new ways to attract audiences in order to recover lost ground and potentially even thrive.
Other tempting aspects of the esports realm include a market value worth billions of RMB, high prize pools and massive audiences that come with the digital sport. In 2021, the LoL Finals match averaged more than 30 million viewers a minute and reached a peak of over 73 million concurrent viewers. Certain viewers may even be willing to purchase a few luxuries here and there as a means to connect with the world’s top players.
Overall, the world of esports has blossomed into an enticingly lucrative market that luxury brands have begun staking their claim in the industry via collaborative partnerships. Brands may want to be on the lookout for collaborative opportunities in this soon-to-be booming market.