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Riot Games Brasil Issues Statement on Oi and Vivo Keyd CBLoL Controversy

Following a story published by The Esports Observer Thursday, Riot Games Brasil issued a statement concerning the controversy surrounding the Brazilian telecommunications company Oi as a sponsor for three upcoming events, only one month after leaving Vivo Keyd (an organization named after an Oi commercial competitor) out of the Brazilian League of Legends Championship (CBLoL) franchise.

“Riot Games clarifies that organizations and leagues have full autonomy to close partnerships and sponsorships, even if they are competitors in the same category.  This is already a common practice in various segments of our current partners, such as energy drinks, computers, monitors, and financial services,” Riot said in a statement to The Esports Observer. “Our model already predicts that leagues and organizations can have sponsors from various segments without conflicts. The process of selecting organizations for the CBLoL franchise project took place completely independently, so there are no commercial differences involving partner brands and sponsors of the league or organizations participating in the championship.” 

The timing of the new sponsorship announcement made some of the Brazilian esports community wonder if it was somehow related to the absence of Vivo Keyd, one of the most traditional esports organizations in the country, from the CBLoL franchise. Speculation on if the two events were related increased after Vivo Keyd founder Eduardo Kim posted the news by TEO on Twitter with three “thumbs up” emoticons.

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