Immortals positioned to return to LCS with buyout of OpTic Gaming
According to a report by ESPN, Immortals Gaming Club has absorbed OpTic’s parent company, Infinite Esports and Entertainment. Immortals now owns all the assets and obligations of the Texas-based organization. The buyout is worth between $35 and $45 million and was approved by Infinite’s boardroom on May 30.
There were multiple bidders for the OpTic Gaming brand outside of Immortals, including a group led by current OpTic executive Hector "H3CZ" Rodriguez and former Infinite president Chris Chaney. Though Rodriguez and Chaney reportedly went deep into negotiations for retaking OpTic, they were unable to out-bid Immortals.
Though Immortals now acquires the entirety of OpTic Gaming, the move was primarily done to facilitate Immortals’ return to the LCS. The organization fielded a competitive League of Legends squad from 2016 to 2017. Though Immortals was one of the LCS’s most popular teams and was generally successful, it was surprisingly denied entry into the LCS for the 2018 season.
The move drew the ire of many fans, with Riot Games eventually stating the move stemmed from Immortals’ shaky financial sustainability. Despite that, many speculated that Riot was functionally punishing Immortals for being one of the first organizations to buy into the Overwatch League with their franchising of the Los Angeles Valiant team. Shortly after being denied, Immortals dissolved its League of Legends team.
The acquisition of Infinite adds to Immortals’ lengthy portfolio of brands that includes the Valiant, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s MiBR, and Brazilian matchmaking service Gamers Club. According to the report, the OpTic LCS team will be rebranded as Immortals. The move also gives Immortals a new Call of Duty team, which will strengthen its position for acquiring a franchise in the title’s upcoming city-based league. Due to league rules, Immortals will also be tasked with finding a buyer for OpTic’s Overwatch League Team, the Houston Outlaws.
As for OpTic, it is unclear what the future holds for its now-redundant CS:GO team or for the OpTic brand itself. There is also no definitive timetable for when OpTic will be required to sell the Outlaws.
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