League of Legends used to be dominated by Asian teams but the recent European power surge brought a lot more attention to the western competitions. One consequence was $2.6 million contributed to Rotterdam after LEC Spring Split finals.
League of Legends is one of the most popular games in the world that happens to be at the top of the ladder thanks to esports in large part. The European teams recently saw a power surge, especially after reaching finals in League of Legends World Championship 2018.
Combine these two indicators and you will probably think about large sums of money the European teams are bringing in currently. This proved to be true with Rotterdam, Netherlands, the city that hosted the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) Summer Split finals.
According to data released by Riot Games and reported by Esports Observer, the event is estimated to have contributed about €2.36 / £2.12 / $2.6 million to the local economy in just two days. Furthermore, about 87 per cent attendees were not Rotterdam residents. Some of them arrived from countries as far away as Peru, China and Korea.
It seems like this was a trend for a while because back in 2018, Riot Game switched the way of choosing host cities for the upcoming events, a way that mirrors that of traditional sports.
While the host cities for 2020 have not been announced yet, there is one metric that points to high success of the host city program. Riot Games had to expand the program in order to accept applications for up to two years in the future due to high demand.
Burson Cohn & Wolfe Sports, Riot's partner in the host city program, stated that these are numbers they have never seen before in esports. These events apparently even outperform other sports of same size, with a good chunk of the success attributed to the high number of non-local attendees.
Keep in mind that this was finals of a split in one of the major leagues. It really starts digging up questions about how much of an impact the international events like MSI and World Championship have.