PlayVS has raised $30.5 million for its platform for high school esports. It has also partnered up with Psyonix and Hi-Rez Studios, publishers of Rocket League and Smite respectively, and a subsequent partnership with Riot’s League of Legends will also launch in February next year.
According to VentureBeat, new investors include Adidas – marking the company’s first investment in esports – Samsung Next, Plexo Capital, and “angels” Sean “Diddy” Combs, David Drummond, Rahul Mehta, Rich Dennis, Michael Dubin, Nat Turner, and Johnny Hou.
The partnerships enable students will have access to partner games as part of their $64 PlayVS league participation fee, and in the event of the titles being free-to-play, students will be granted in-game perks. Unlike traditional sports teams, PlayVS members can get involved without tryouts “regardless of experience, gender or age”, and there’s no maximum limit on the number of members or teams each school can have. Benefits of the scheme are said to include “valuable skills” such as critical thinking and teamwork.