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Twitch hires Nascar’s Garate to new sponsorship sales role

Online streaming platform Twitch has hired Lou Garate, a long-time executive with US motor-racing series Nascar, as its first global head of sponsorship sales.

Garate has worked for Nascar since 2007, most recently as senior vice-president of partnership marketing.

He will now be based in Twitch’s New York office with a remit to develop partnerships with live entertainment organisations, focusing on the esports industry.

Walker Jacobs, chief revenue officer of Twitch, said in a statement reported by Variety: “He brings more than 20 years of expertise developing and growing marketing partnerships with brands, and will play an integral role in strengthening Twitch’s position as the future of live entertainment and the home of esports.”

Twitch signed two notable rights deals last month. Motor racing championship Formula One agreed a one-race deal covering its Mexican Grand Prix through which every session from the event was streamed by Twitch in Germany, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

Meanwhile, Australia’s National Basketball League claimed a first for the country with a global streaming agreement with Twitch. The NBL struck a two-year deal to stream all games globally on a dedicated channel. Games will also be co-streamed to allow users to provide unique commentary on their own channels.