TORRANCE, Calif., Jan 24, 2019 – Honda today announced it has joined forces with pro esports team Team Liquid and the streaming gaming brand Twitch, making Honda both the official automotive sponsor and official vehicle of Team Liquid. The partnership will grow the brand's relationship with the gaming community, expanding how gamers and fans of esports interact with professional esports athletes and Twitch streamers. In addition, the partnership with Team Liquid and Twitch will provide significant access and value to gaming fans, while growing Honda's engagement with critical millennial and Gen Z audiences.
Throughout the gaming season, Honda will support Team Liquid's participation across multiple global and domestic tournaments, with the partnership kicking off with Team Liquid's highly anticipated arrival at the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) in Los Angeles on Jan. 26, in a Team Liquid customized Honda Odyssey minivan. The team also will have a fleet of Honda and Team Liquid-branded Civics available to drive to and from training. Honda also will be prominently featured on new team jerseys, set to be revealed onstage at the LCS, alongside the customized vehicles.
Through a six-part video series, Level Up, Honda will help audiences follow three of Team Liquid's biggest rosters – League of Legends, Fortnite and Dota 2, giving viewers a rare, up-close, behind-the-scenes look at the personal and professional lives of players, coaches and staff, including family life, team struggles and rookies facing down their first major challenges. The series will chronicle the journeys of players, coaches and managers as they navigate the ins and outs of their journey towards championship titles: https://youtu.be/CNx_uvoHFYM.
"Expanding our footprint in the gaming community is just the beginning of our new partnership with Team Liquid and Twitch as we engage with gamers to amp up millennial and Gen Z interest in the Honda brand," said Phil Hruska, Manager of Media Strategy at American Honda. "Civic is a critical gateway to Honda, capturing more first time buyers than any other auto brand and our new gaming platform will help us keep it that way as millennials surpass baby boomers as the No. 1 car-buying segment."
"My first car was a green Honda Accord EX – and associate safety, reliability and style with the Honda brand to this day, and am excited to stir those memories with an official Team Liquid partnership", said Steve Arhancet, Co-CEO Team Liquid. "We'll be working closely with Honda on content, activations and more that cater directly to our Team Liquid fan audience, and feel honored to work with a prestigious brand who believes as fiercely as we do in the esports ecosystem."
Other notable efforts expected from Honda in gaming this year include Head 2 Head live streaming Battle Royale-style tournaments with streaming proceeds going to charity. Streaming audiences can tune in live via a dedicated Twitch channel and through influencer channels. Honda also will bring audiences direct access to Team Liquid athletes via an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit in the coming months. Additional announcements will be forthcoming later in the year.
Honda's custom gaming content will be promoted on social media and in digital placements as well as on the social media channels of Team Liquid members. Media promotion will include homepage takeovers surrounding key tournament dates, in-console takeovers on Xbox, high-impact video units on PlayStation, targeted video inventory across Twitch and multicultural targeting across premium digital partners.
Honda offers a full line of reliable, fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive vehicles with advanced safety technologies sold through over 1,000 independent U.S. Honda dealers. The Honda includes the Fit, Civic, Insight, Accord and Clarity series passenger cars, along with the HR-V, CR-V, Passport and Pilot sport utility vehicles, the Ridgeline pickup and the Odyssey lineup minivan.
Honda has been producing automobiles in America for more than 35 years and currently operates 19 major manufacturing facilities in North America. In 2018, more than 90 percent of all Honda brand vehicles sold in the U.S. were made in North America, with nearly two-thirds made in America, using domestic and globally sourced parts.
Team Liquid was founded in 2000 as a clan on the gaming platform Battle.net, and has now evolved into one of the leading international multigame esports teams with training centers in Utrecht, The Netherlands, Sao Paulo, Brazil and Los Angeles, California. Team Liquid has over 65 athletes competing across 16 distinct games, including all major esports titles, such as DOTA 2, League of Legends, CS:GO, Fortnite, PUBG and more. Led by Co-CEOs Steve Arhancet and Victor Goossens, Team Liquid is one of the most successful esports teams in the Western market in terms of competitive achievement and fan engagement across multiple sports.