A recent report by Esporkolik, a Turkish esports news outlet, claimed that Riot Games may soon allow VALORANT teams to pen sponsorship agreements with gambling companies. The claim was shared on Twitter, sparking immediate interest in the news.
The original claim was posted yesterday and immediately became a hot topic. Teams in other esports disciplines are allowed to have gambling brands as sponsors. However, Riot Games has been historically very strict on its policies regarding sponsors.
Because of Riot’s stance, esports teams are sometimes struggling financially. Many believe that gambling companies, which are known for their lucrative sponsorship agreements, would benefit the sector.
As a result, Esporkolik’s claim shocked many fans. Some VALORANT enthusiasts were excited, while others took the news with a grain of salt. Those who doubted the news turned out to be right as Riot Games told journalists that the rumors were indeed incorrect.
Esporkolik’s Claim Was Incorrect
On March 15, Max Katz reported that sources say Riot will not change its sponsorship policies. Katz added that Riot representatives remain committed to delivering safe, secure and meaningful experiences that “best support the growth” of the global esports ecosystem. Later, George Geddes replied to Katz, saying that he had received the same statement.
Dot Esports, one of the biggest esports news outlets, managed to successfully contact Riot Games on the matter. The video games company told Dot Esports that Riot Games will indeed keep its current policy for the time being while remaining open to new opportunities.
Here is Riot’s exact statement, as reported by Dot Esports:
While there has been no change in the current policy regarding approved team sponsor categories, we will continue to evaluate all opportunities that deliver safe, secure, and meaningful experiences that best support the growth of our esports ecosystem globally.
Riot Games statement
Riot confirmed what Katz had said, saying that it remains open to new opportunities that ”ensure the integrity of all our esports, enable great experiences for fans, and unlock revenue streams for our teams.”
Dot Esports said that it also contacted team owners in Europe. They said that they were aware of Riot’s open policy. However, it is still unlikely that European teams would be allowed to have gambling sponsors because of the Old Continent’s stricter stance on gambling. As of the time of this writing, North American franchise owners aren’t aware of a potential policy change either.