Overwatch League adds Atlanta and Guangzhou expansion teams

City-based esports competition sells two franchise slots for second season.

Overwatch League adds Atlanta and Guangzhou expansion teams

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Activision Blizzard’s Overwatch League esports competition has revealed the US city of Atlanta and Guangzhou in China as the homes of the first two expansion franchises for its 2019 season.

The Atlanta team will be operated by a new company called Atlanta Esports Ventures, which is backed by Cox Enterprises, a huge conglomerate based in Georgia’s capital city.

The Guangazhou outfit, meanwhile, is owned by Chinese financial and entertainment company Nenking Group, which also owns the Guangzhou Long Lions basketball team.

The addition of the two franchises brings Overwatch League’s total number of teams up to 14. An official statement from Overwatch added that the official team names, marks and rosters for the new franchises will be revealed at a later date.

“We know Atlanta and Guangzhou have deeply engaged fan communities and we can’t wait to unveil their teams,” said Overwatch League commissioner Nate Nanzer. “As the league continues to grow, we’re looking forward to seeing more talented pros in action as more roster spots open up.”

The announcement comes less than a week after the conclusion of Overwatch League’s first season, which saw the London Spitfire crowned as the tournament’s first champion.

Overwatch League is the first city-based esports competition, and expansion slots for its second season are expected to fetch between US$30 million and US$60 million. Paris and Shanghai have also been touted as potential destinations for new teams as the league looks to broaden its reach outside the US.