World Rugby has appointed marketing consultancy Strive Sponsorship to investigate potential options and opportunities in the gaming and esports.
The appointment is a second in recent weeks for London-based Strive, which was also engaged by the England and Wales Cricket board earlier this month for a similar review.
While the opportunities for rugby in esports are more limited than in football or basketball, for instance, where the Fifa and NBA 2k video game series are already hugely popular, World Rugby is still keen to explore how it could develop its offering and build rugby’s popularity with new demographics.
“We’re keen to better educate ourselves in the world of gaming and esports prior to making an assessment of what opportunities may exist in helping us achieve our objectives,” said Tom Hill, chief commercial officer at World Rugby.
“Strive’s intrinsic understanding and strong track record in sport, esports and gaming – and their intersection, gives us the confidence that we’re getting the best advice to make key strategic decisions.”