The Pittsburgh Knights have announced a multi-year strategic partnership agreement with South Korean organization Absolute Power Esports. The two have joined together to acquire a franchise spot in the League of Legends Champions Korea (LCK) for the SeolHaeOne Prince team, with operations being located in both the United States and South Korea.
In addition, the collaboration will consist of global marketing and sales efforts, various tournaments and events, online and offline fan engagement activities, and celebrity marketing.
SeolHaeOne Prince apply for LCK slot
OJ Kim, Owner of Absolute Power eSports, commented in a release:
I believe the future of LCK and APE lies in globalization, and our partnership with the Pittsburgh Knights is the first step in the right direction. The Knights can help us to connect to the vast pool of extensive knowledge and experience in both esports and traditional sports with the Pittsburgh Steelers and other relevant sports-industry stakeholders.
We will continue to grow our synergy from the partnership through joint development of global sponsorships, and we will show you the esports team that continues to grow together with LCK.
SeolHaeOne Prince finished the 2020 LCK Summer Split dead last, with 1 win and 17 losses. The Korean team, formerly known as APK Prince, placed in the bottom half bracket during the Spring Split as well. However, these lackluster results can be attributed to the organization’s short history in the professional scene. SeolHaeOne Prince only recently acquired its LCK slot after winning the 2019 Challengers Korea Summer Playoffs, and defeating the Jin Air Green Wings during the 2020 Spring Promotion.
🇺🇸 Pittsburgh and Seoul aren't so far apart tonight. 🇰🇷
We've entered into a partnership agreement with Absolute Power Esports, owner of @teamseolhaeone! 🎉
설해원프린스 운영팀인 APE와 파트너쉽 계약 체결! @teamseolhaeone ! 🎉
— Pittsburgh Knights (@KnightsGG) August 21, 2020
Pittsburgh Knights expand overseas
James O’Connor, President of Pittsburgh Knights, added:
We will do our best to help the league by sharing the methodologies we’ve adopted with the LCK and APE. Our goals are for the Knights to become actively involved in Korea’s champion-making esports ecosystem, and ultimately to share the intensity, excitement, and culture of APE and the LCK with North and South American audiences. We are committed to giving our full support, now and with future opportunities.
In April, Riot Games revealed that the LCK would be moving to a franchised format in 2021. Other than the current LCK and Challengers Korea teams that applied, many organizations from outside of the space also expressed interest. While FaZe Clan and NRG have declined after submitting letters of intent, the Pittsburgh Knights look to expand their presence overseas.