One of the fastest growing sports trends now is eSports, as nearly 300 million people tuned in to watch professional gamers compete in video game tournaments last year. Gaming now has professional coverage on ESPN, and even companies like Red Bull sponsor events and have their own teams. There's a lot of overlap between car and video game nerds, and its time that more car companies acknowledge the potential demographic that is this huge community. It may not be the first to do so, but Mercedes-Benz is taking the plunge and partnering with the Electronic Sports League (ESL).
According to EGameTube, Mercedes-Benz is initiating a partnership with ESL before the Dota 2 Major season begins in Hamburg, Germany in October. Mercedes plans to participate in other ESL events, sponsoring different competitions and games in different countries.
Mercedes' Vice President of Marketing Dr. Jens Thiemer stated, "We have been following the extremely fast-growing eSports segment for some time now and are firmly of the opinion this new involvement will complement our existing sports sponsoring activities."
This venture may be risky, but Mercedes went on to say that it is open about forming bonds with new demographics, and this huge community is apparently a good fit for the luxury car manufacturer. Professional sim racing may not have the exposure of a game like Dota 2, but it's only a matter of time.