Press release

23/08/2019

The Overwatch League™ 2019 Grand Finals Sells Out Wells Fargo Center

Over 12,000* people expected for the Sept. 29 event in Philadelphia
​​​​​​​Fans from five continents will descend on the East Coast city to watch the next Overwatch League champions be crowned the best

IRVINE, Calif. – Aug. 23, 2019 – Interest in the Overwatch League™ is at an all-time high and tickets to the Overwatch League 2019 Grand Finals have sold out. The event will determine the champions of the 2019 season of the Overwatch League, the world’s first major global, city-based esports league. This year’s championship will be held on Sept. 29 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, home of the National Basketball Association’s Philadelphia 76ers and the National Hockey League’s Philadelphia Flyers.

“We have the most passionate fans in all of sports,” said Pete Vlastelica, Activision Blizzard Esports President and CEO and Overwatch League Commissioner. “Last year’s Grand Finals in Brooklyn was one of the largest esports event ever, and the viewership and passion from fans that we’ve seen this year leads us to believe that this event could be even better. It’s clear that fans all over the globe are eager to watch the Overwatch League live and in person.”

Last year’s Grand Finals saw the London Spitfire defeat the Philadelphia Fusion to become the first-ever Overwatch League world champions. The two teams that qualify for the Grand Finals this year will compete for the League’s championship trophy and a share of the US $1.7 million prize pool—with the winning team getting $1.1M and the runner-up taking home $600K.

The 2019 Grand Finals will be livestreamed on Twitch in 190 countries and broadcast in the United States on ABC from 3–6 p.m. EDT on Sept. 29. It will also be available on the ESPN app, overwatchleague.com, and the Overwatch League app. Additionally, the Grand Finals will air in the following countries via additional platforms: Canada (TSN), China (Zhanqi, NetEase CC, Bilibili, and Huya) France (Mediawan), Germany (Sport1), South Korea (SBSafreecaTV) and Russia (E Terra TV).

In addition to the sell-out, this year’s Grand Finals will be one of the most geographically diverse events ever, with fans expected to attend from five continents, including North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. Those fans attending the Overwatch League Grand Finals will also be some of the first to enjoy the upgrades to Wells Fargo Center following a $250-million renovation initiative aimed at reinventing every aspect of the fan experience.

“We are thrilled to host the Overwatch League Grand Finals,” said Dave Scott, chairman and CEO, Comcast Spectacor.  “This world-class event is the first of its kind to come through the Wells Fargo Center and we are looking forward to hosting thousands of fans from all over the world in our recently transformed arena. This event marks a monumental moment for our city and furthers Philadelphia’s emergence as a global esports hub.”

The Grand Finals represents the culmination of the 2019 Overwatch League season playoffs, which will feature 12 of the league’s 20 teams in a bracket-style competition. The league’s two division winners along with the next best four teams by record, regardless of division, will automatically qualify. Two additional teams will qualify through a play-in tournament between the seventh- through 12th-place teams. Those eight teams will compete in a double-elimination bracket beginning Aug. 30.

On-site activations and other fan entertainment at the event will be announced soon. For more information on the Overwatch League 2019 Grand Finals, visit overwatchleague.com.

About the Overwatch League™

The Overwatch League™ is the first major global professional esports league with city-based teams across Asia, Europe, and North America. Overwatch® was created by globally acclaimed publisher Blizzard Entertainment (a division of Activision Blizzard—NASDAQ: ATVI), whose iconic franchises have helped lay the foundations and push the boundaries of professional esports over the last 15 years. The latest addition to Blizzard’s stable of twenty-two #1 games,[1] Overwatch was built from the ground up for online competition, with memorable characters and fast-paced action designed for the most engaging gameplay and spectator experiences. To learn more about the Overwatch League, visit www.overwatchleague.com.

About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft®, Hearthstone®, Overwatch®, the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® franchises, and the multi-franchise Heroes of the Storm®, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (https://www.blizzard.com), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes twenty-two #1 games[1] and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online gaming service, Blizzard Battle.net®, is one of the largest online-gaming services in the world, with millions of active players.

About Activision Blizzard Esports

Activision Blizzard Esports (ABE) is responsible for the development, operation, and commercialization of Activision Blizzard’s professional gaming properties including the Overwatch League™, the Call of Duty® World League, Hearthstone Masters, the StarCraft II World Championship Series, and the World of Warcraft Arena World Championship and Mythic Dungeon International, among others. ABE also operates Tespa, the leader in collegiate esports. It is ABE’s vision to be the most innovative, scalable, and valuable developer of global competitive entertainment.

About Wells Fargo Center

Wells Fargo Center is one of the busiest arenas in the world, hosting 250-plus events and welcoming in more than 2.6 million fans each year. Home to the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers, NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers, as well as the National Lacrosse League’s Philadelphia Wings and the Arena Football League’s Philadelphia Soul, Wells Fargo Center is the epicenter of Philadelphia sports and entertainment culture. Since opening its doors in 1996 the arena has hosted a long list of nationally-recognized events, including the Republican National Convention (2000), NBA All-Star Weekend (2002), ESPN X-Games (2001/2002), Stanley Cup Finals (1997/2010), NHL Entry Draft (2014), NCAA Frozen Four (2014), and the Democratic National Convention (2016).

About Comcast Spectacor

Comcast Spectacor is a professional sports and live entertainment company that is part of Comcast Corporation, a global media and technology leader that operates Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal and Sky. Headquartered in Philadelphia, Comcast Spectacor owns and operates the Wells Fargo Center arena and complex, as well as a portfolio of professional sports teams that includes the National Hockey League’s Philadelphia Flyers, the Overwatch League’s Philadelphia Fusion, the National Lacrosse League’s Philadelphia Wings and the Maine Mariners of the ECHL. Comcast Spectacor also holds strategic interest in several partner companies spanning the sports and entertainment landscape, including Spectra, Learfield IMG College, Xfinity Live! Philadelphia and N3rd Street Gamers. Visit us at ComcastSpectacor.com for more information.

[1] Sales and/or downloads, based on internal company records and reports from key distribution partners.

* Expected attendance equals tickets sold plus comps.

© 2019 Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. OVERWATCH and OVERWATCH LEAGUE are trademarks or registered trademarks of Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.  All other trademarks and trade names are the properties of their respective owners.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements: Information in this press release that involves Blizzard Entertainment's expectations, plans, intentions or strategies regarding the future, including statements about ticket availability and the dates, features and locations of the 2019 Overwatch League Grand Finals and the features of the 2019 Overwatch League season, are forward-looking statements that are not facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause Blizzard Entertainment's actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set forth in this release include unanticipated product delays and other factors identified in the risk factors sections of Activision Blizzard’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to Blizzard Entertainment and Activision Blizzard as of the date of this release, and neither Blizzard Entertainment nor Activision Blizzard assumes any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of the future performance of Blizzard Entertainment or Activision Blizzard and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond its control and may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations.

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