Svenska Spel, the largest gaming company in Sweden, has announced that it will partner with the Swedish Ice Hockey Association and Swedish Esports Association (SESF) to sponsor the 2020 Swedish eHockey Championship, which starts later this month.
The competition will see 1v1 solo and 6v6 team games held over five weeks between August and October, with the finals on October 2 and 3 to be broadcast by Amazon-owned live streaming platform Twitch.
Svenska Spel Sponsorship Project Manager, Jimmy Sandberg, said: “As the main sponsor of both the Swedish Ice Hockey Association and the Swedish Esports Association SESF, we are proud to also take on the role as the main sponsor of the Swedish Championships in eHockey. Working together to marry traditional sports with e-sports is something we believe in.”
Christer Plars, Commercial Manager at the Swedish Ice Hockey Association, said the deal aimed to increase interest in esports as an alternative after the association curtailed the 2019-20 hockey season for all Swedish ice hockey leagues in March due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said: “We want to reach new potential target groups with an interest in hockey, and together with Svenska Spel, increase interest in esports. Getting more people to get involved and interested in ice hockey is an important part of the Swedish Ice Hockey Association’s strategy.”
“Under the current situation, it also feels good to be able to offer more people the opportunity to play ice hockey virtually, it is a good complement while waiting for the big ice hockey tournaments to start again,” he added.