Updated: Previous reports rumored a $90 million deal would be imminent.
The reports of a monumental streaming deal between Riot Games and Major League Baseball Advanced Media have reached critical mass.
Paresh Dave of the Los Angeles Times reports two anonymous sources have confirmed an exclusive rights partnership between the League of Legends publishers and MLBAM could be worth close to $200 million over two years.
Turner Sports editor Richard Lewis originally broke news of the deal and reported that League of Legends matches would move from Twitch and YouTube broadcasts to an exclusive app developed by BAMTech, an MLBAM subsidiary.
BAMTech is a partnership between MLBAM, The Walt Disney Company and the National Hockey League and currently deals with online streaming for HBO, MLB, NHL and WWE.
The majority of viewership of League of Legends matches comes from Twitch and YouTube. Lewis also reported that a subscription model could be introduced for the standalone app.
SportsBusiness Daily added to the original report that the deal would come in at around $90 million annually.
“Considering Riot’s aggressive strategy of vertical integration to better the user experience — they built their own Internet backbone to improve latency — having their own channel, and thereby reducing their reliance on Twitch, is a solid decision,” chief executive of consulting firm SuperData Research Joost van Dreunen said.
Dave says Riot Games, Twitch and YouTube declined to give comment to the LA Times while a spokesperson for MLBAM didn’t respond.