Italian Serie A club Juventus has partnered with Astralis Group, one of the world’s most successful esports organisations, to create a new esports team.
Denmark-based Astralis, which operates teams in titles such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends and EA Sports’ FIFA series, has garnered Ettore Giannuzzi, Luca Tubelli and Renzo Lodeserto to form a Juventus esports team. Astralis will assist Juventus in the operational management of the team.
The Juventus team will enter its first competition this week – eFootball.Pro, which is held in Barcelona and hosted by Konami, publisher of the game Pro Evolution Soccer. Other football clubs taking part in the competition include the Premier League’s Manchester United and LaLiga’s Barcelona. The competition begins on December 14 and ends 18 April.
Giorgio Ricci, the chief revenue officer of Juventus, said in a statement: “The entry into the world of esports not only gives us the opportunity to turn to a new and vast audience, but it is also a testimony of how Juventus is attentive to the evolution of the forms of entertainment and the interests of the public. The club has always been ready to accept new challenges and today we are pleased to undertake this adventure, proud of having once again given concrete application to our philosophy of: Live Ahead.”
Anders Hørsholt, co-chief executive officer of Astralis, said: “Astralis Group is a pioneer in esports and our approach to performance optimisation on all levels has influenced the entire industry. We already demonstrated our ability to create long-term results, and it’s a natural development of our business to enter collaborations like this. We’re very pleased to be a part of Juventus’ esports initiative.”
Besides the eFootball.Pro competition, Juventus will also take part in the eSerie A TIM, the first Pro Evolution Soccer league for Italian football clubs.
Earlier this month, Astralis has announced plans to launch an initial public offering, in a move that would be a first for a professional esports team.