Call of Duty franchise spots reportedly going for $25 million
Investors and teams are going to have to pay $25 million (£18.7 million) to purchase a spot in the upcoming Call of Duty franchised league, according to a report from ESPN. Activision Blizzard Esports Leagues has reportedly begun the sales process for the recently-confirmed league, having met with existing professional Call of Duty teams and Overwatch League ownership groups in the past week. According to the report from ESPN’s Jacob Wolf, the publisher has asked potential buyers to give a non-binding indication towards their interest in a franchise spot within the next two weeks. Overwatch League franchise owners are said to have the first right of negotiation in the upcoming Call of Duty competition. Confirming rumours and speculation that had formed over a number of months, Activision Blizzard confirmed it plans to launch a city-based franchised league for the first-person franchise during its Q4 earnings call last month. The Call of Duty World League is Activision Blizzard’s current professional competition for the series, hosting 16 teams at the MLG Arena in Columbus, Ohio alongside a number of open events that are hosted throughout each year-long season. Original buy-ins for the Overwatch League – the first franchised esports league launched by Activision Blizzard – went for $20 million (£14.9 million). Expansion slots for the second season of the competition, however, were reported to cost anywhere from $30-60 million (£22.4-44.9 million) each. Esports Insider says: $25 million sounds outrageous for a spot in a franchised league for a game that has failed to cement itself as a top esport throughout its competitive tenure (which now spans over a decade). The number is believable, though – just look at the figures that expansion slots in the OWL went for. Activision Blizzard clearly has a solid sales team and we expect spots in the CoD league to be snapped up.