Previous undeniable world boxing cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk and Ukraine-based esports tournament operator WePlay Esports will collectively invest $25M USD in a brand-new battling league that was unveiled in December, The Esports Observer has learned.

At the end of last year, WePlay announced that it had actually partnered with Usyk to develop a fighting video game league called WePlay Ultimate Battling League (WUFL). The joint announcement occurred on Dec. 13, the final day of the WePlay Dragon Temple competition for Mortal Kombat 11.

Speaking with TEO, WePlay Esports Handling Partners Oleg Krot and Yura Lazebnikov, and Usyk, revealed new details about the partnership and the company’s strategies for expansion into brand-new regions in the coming year, along with sustaining its efforts in the most popular esports in the region.

The WePlay Ultimate Combating League “joint investment” amounts to $25M. WePlay did not reveal particular details on how much cash it is putting into the total, nor Usyk’s dedication or other celebrations included. The business likewise did not disclose terms, consisting of if this is a single-year or multi-year commitment when asked.

” The funds will be bought the league’s advancement. They will be invested on the production and circulation of top quality content,” Lazebnikov stated, including that the “monetary relationships are an internal matter.”

Usyk stated that the idea of partnering with WePlay for some sort of collaboration began at the tail end of 2020 when he, Krot, and Lazebnikov started talking about esports during an opportunity encounter.

” Back in November, we were taping an interview with my promotion company team,” Usyk said. “After the shooting, I spoke with WePlay Esports founders Oleg Krot and Yura Lazebnikov, and they told me about the esports market and its perspectives in the home entertainment field. That’s how we began working out.”

He included that in the early phases of this partnership he is “working collectively on the task” however soon they will “define locations of responsibility for each partner.”

While the combating game league was announced at a Mortal Kombat 11 event, Usyk anticipates that other games will be supported, but the league is still in its early phase of preparation and no concrete choices have been made about which titles it wishes to feature:

” It would be feasible to focus on some other popular combating games besides Mortal Kombat 11. For circumstances, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a successful competitive video game with a huge fan base amongst casual and hardcore gamers, he stated. “Other titles that we are thinking about for sure are Street Fighter V and Tekken 7.”

While WePlay has strategies to put some of its energy and resources into the new league, it will continue to concentrate on popular titles such as Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. The jury is still out on if it will support brand-new and emerging titles such as Valorant or Wild Rift.

” We will continue hosting CS: GO occasions since it’s specifically popular among the CIS area audience,” Krot stated. “And Dota 2 stays our mainstream discipline, so its fans won’t be dissatisfied in 2021. As for the other games and the relocation towards mobile esports– we’ll see. ”

Lazebnikov likewise said that WePlay intend on broadening its presence in key markets, with a concentrate on tapping into the U.S. audience. The company already has offices in Los Angeles, and remained in the procedure of opening an arena in the city prior to COVID-19 included local limitations on huge in-person gatherings.

” While we will be expanding our presence in Europe and North America, China is presently in our focus as well. At the start of 2021, we will open our 2nd esports arena in Los Angeles, California. This action will assist us engage more with the U.S. audience through content, services, and options, as well as develop collaborations.”

Finally, Krot and Lazebnikov concur that WePlay Esports had a pretty successful 2020 in spite of the numerous challenges that it faced from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. As many other esports-related operations (conserve those that rely on profits from physical real-world locations and live occasions) have suggested, the ability of esports to transition to all online/remote play helped the company to continue running events.

” When you are growing an international media holding business, perspective is much more important than the bottom line of one year,” Krot stated. “We can state that 2020 turned out to be pretty effective both financially and tactically despite the troubles it presented.”