TRIPLEPOINTS OF INTEREST: JANUARY 27

This week, Ninja’s deal with Mixer sheds a different light on the streaming industry, the Big Three say no to import taxes, and Riot Games looks to the future with external licensing opportunities.

Details of Ninja’s exclusive deal with Microsoft’s Mixer gives further insight into the streaming industry
Late last year, Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, the popular streamer known for his Fortnite content, left Amazon’s Twitch for Microsoft’s Mixer, a move that set the battle for exclusive streaming deals into motion. This week, financial details from the deal surfaced, with PC Gamer and Screen Rant reporting that the streamer-turned-celebrity was paid between $20M and $30M to move to Mixer. The price tag has raised eyebrows and, according to CNN, it brings the intention of streamers into question, as Ninja’s followership plummeted from 14 million on Twitch to just over 1 million during his first month on Mixer. Even though it appears Ninja went where the money is, Dot Esports claims that the war for streamers is not just a numbers game, especially for creators like Ninja who are looking to expand their brand beyond streaming. The outlet explains that signing with Twitch’s competitors may provide streamers with more flexibility and opportunities to focus on new initiatives instead of worrying about the number of hours streamed or viewers tuning in.

The Big Three repel tariff on electronics out of China
In what GameSpot calls a “rare move,” Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo released a joint statement opposing President Donald Trump’s 25% import tax on electronics made in China. The opposition recently led to an agreement between the United States and China stating the tax will not be implemented. According to GamesIndustry.biz, GameDaily.biz, and WCCFTech, this guarantees that the sale price for the PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and rumored Nintendo Switch Pro will not spike ahead of launch, enabling each console to remain affordable for consumers this holiday season. 

Riot Games expanding into the licensed product space
League of Legends developer Riot Games is expanding its business into licensed consumer products, this week announcing the hiring of  Ron Johnson as global head of consumer products. Johnson, who has served in executive roles at Nickelodeon, Viacom, and Disney, spoke with GamesIndustry.biz about his ambition to expand Riot’s licensed product business around the globe. Johnson explained that Riot will continue to “invest on all fronts,” but licensing will be a big part of its future strategy.

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