MLM Company Herbalife Sponsors Overwatch Team Guangzhou Charge
Normally, when a big-time team like Guangzhou Charge has a new sponsor, we’re excited for them. It’s important for the growth of a team to get their name out there. Sponsorships are key for financial growth as well. Today, we’re bemused, or perhaps horrified instead. Overwatch’s Guangzhou Charge is being sponsored by a multi-level marketing company (MLM), Herbalife. Herbalife is banned in many countries, and they’ve already had to pay up to 200 million in fines for their business model.
Is this better than “x player has cheated”? We’ll leave that up to you to decide.
Herbalife: Guangzhou Charge’s Primary Sponsor
Guangzhou Charge has not been met with excitement about this news. Not even a little bit. Herbalife, an MLM, is the Overwatch team’s primary sponsor, which no doubt means a great deal of cash for the team (or at least, the people at the top of the food chain). They are the title sponsor and partner with Guangzhou Charge.
Herbalife Nutrition will provide nutrition support and health care advice to the players, according to Esports Observer. According to the president of Herbalife Nutrition China, esports is a part of the company’s sports sponsorship blueprint in China.
We do agree that health concerns are very valid and valuable in esports. There will be no argument here about how valuable health care is not just for esports players, but everyone. A good example is League of Legends Jian “Uzi” Zihao, who had to retire due to ongoing health issues. We covered that back in June.
Herbalife Nutrition managed to dodge a “pyramid scheme” label by paying that 200 million dollars fine to the US Federal Trade Commission. That in no way changes what they are though. It seems like esports is starting to let in companies that normally sponsor traditional sports teams. Herbalife, for example, is the sponsor of the Los Angeles Galaxy, and sports star Christiano Ronaldo.
Herbalife uses a popular “multi-level marketing (MLM) business program”, or perhaps by their better-known name, “Get Rich Quick Scheme”. They use shady, disgusting tactics to make people at the top rich. John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight has featured the company when discussing similarities between MLM companies and pyramid schemes, which should give people cause for concern.
While on one hand, we’re happy to see a major company sponsor an Overwatch team, why did it have to be an MLM that is well-known for using sketchy tactics like Herbalife? If they genuinely offer something useful to the team, great. But it’s going to be pushing the Herbalife lifestyle on young, impressionable fans, and that’s dangerous.
This is a foolish decision to mount your Overwatch team’s financial success on the back of an MLM. We hope it works out for them, but we also hope people aren’t fooled by that absolute nonsense.