Deutsche Telekom claims landmark esports investment with SK Gaming

German telecoms giant Deutsche Telekom has claimed a first with the acquisition of a 25-per-cent stake in German esports organisation SK Gaming.

Deutsche Telekom has existing ties with the Cologne-headquartered company, having served as its main sponsor and technology partner since the middle of 2018. It says the latest agreement makes it the first telecoms operator to invest directly in an esports organisation.

The transaction means that company founder Alexander Müller, Mercedes-Benz, German Bundesliga football club FC Köln and Deutsche Telekom now each hold a 25-per-cent stake in SK Gaming.

Hiro Kishi, head of sports sponsorship at Telekom Deutschland, said: “Our acquisition underlines the importance and value that Telekom places on esports and gaming.

“Our networks, products and services provide the best possible environment for the esports and gaming community. SK Gaming is the perfect partner with whom we can cooperate to shape the market into the future.”

Müller, chief executive of SK Gaming, added: “With Deutsche Telekom, we intend to further develop the esports sector, and in some ways to redefine it. In the course of our cooperation in the past, we’ve managed to move a lot forward at many different levels. We’re now looking forward to taking the next steps together.”