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Paysafe Group, ESL Connect Mobile Payments to eSports

February 15, 2019         By: Steven Anderson

Increasingly, esports are a big deal, as evidenced by the growing popularity of places to view such matches online, like Twitch. It makes sense on a certain level; for more than a few folks out there, watching simulated people chase each other with rifles is much more entertaining than watching real people chase a ball around for several minutes followed by several minutes of nothing much before the ball-chasing starts again in earnest. That’s where an expanded connection between Paysafe Group and ESL—which Paysafe Group dropped word our way about—makes a particular sense.

The connection between Paysafe Group and ESL—by way of its paysafecard system—has been in play for some time already. With the expansion, however, comes some new options; paysafecard is slated to sponsor community competitions via ESL Play, and paysafecard will also support international tournaments now as well, branching into ESL One in India, among others.

Several other features will reportedly continue, including the “paysafecard esports Hall of Fame,” which provides accolades for well-known figures in the esports space as decided by a jury of their peers as well as community voting. The paysafecard “Beat the Legends” series will also continue, allowing esports fans to take on some of the greats live on an ESL stage. Finally, the paysafecard Ultimate Experience will serve as a way to create VIP patrons in a similar fashion to most sports, offering the potential for an all-expenses-paid trip to an ESL stadium event complete with a range of perks.

Given that the esports community is pulling viewership like no tomorrow—2018 saw about 280 million viewers total—it’s easy to see why Paysafe Group is making such a move. It gets the product out in front of a lot of potentially interested customers, and it also has tertiary impact from there. For instance, someone goes to work after watching an ESL event and discovers a situation that would be a good use case for paysafecard; suddenly the connection is made and paysafecard may have a new client out of the deal. It’s hardly foolproof, but that’s the nature of marketing.

With Paysafe Group adding some backing to esports, its eventual status as a top-notch sporting event may well be closer to hand than anyone saw coming.