YouTube paid Activision Blizzard $160M for Overwatch League Streaming
In a strange move, recently Blizzard Entertainment moved the Overwatch League broadcast streaming from Twitch to YouTube.
eSports Observer uncovered through sources familiar with negotiations and contracts that YouTube paid $160 millions to Activision Blizzard for a 3-year media rights deal to stream Overwatch League through YouTube.
The original deal was $90 million over 2 years, but Activision Blizzard added Hearthstone eSports streaming rights into the YouTube deal as an incentive.
This $160M deal, according to eSports Observer, gives Blizzard Entertainment access to Google Cloud’s cloud computing services.
As part of the deal, Google Cloud now will provide cloud computing services to Activision Blizzard, an account that sources have described as enormous given Activision Blizzard’s status as one of the biggest video game companies in the world.
This quote flags this deal as suspicious to me. It might have nothing to do with the reason Activision Blizzard steered away from the GeForce Now cloud gaming streaming platform — but makes you wonder if there is a plan to launch a Blizzard cloud service through Google Cloud at a later time.
Maybe not, but this eSports Observer’s report makes abundantly clear that Activision Blizzard is now hunting for lucrative deals. If the GeForce Now deal was not appealing, I can see Activision Blizzard building their own cloud streaming platform, or signing a multi-year deal with Stadia, Google Cloud, Microsoft XCloud, or anyone who strikes a favorable deal.
Read more in my recent article concerning the Activision Blizzard request to remove its full library from GeForce Now.
For the eSports Observer article about the $160M deal go here.