PlayStation, in partnership with the esports biz RTS, has acquired the fighting game tournament organization Evo.
Evo itself is a well-established force in the fighting game world, and notably the longest-running fighting game tournament. The event, typically held on a yearly basis in the pre-pandemic world, hosts global competitors for fighting game series like Street Fighter, Tekken, Mortal Kombat, Guilty Gear, and many more.
PlayStation positions the move as an "exciting step" in its plans to expand its own fighting game and esports reach. The acquisition is actually a joint venture partnership, with fledgling esports venture RTS partnering with PlayStation to take ownership of Evo.
According to a blog post shared by PlayStation, Evo co-founders Tom and Tony Cannon "will remain closely involved in an advisory role" moving forward.
With the acquisition news comes the announcement of a new Evo Online event slated for later this year. This August, PlayStation-owned Evo will kick of Evo online and showcase online matches between top Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate, Street Fighter V, Guilty Gear -Strive-, and Tekken 7 players in the North America, Europe, Asia and Latin America regions.
Separate from PlayStation's blog post, the Evo Twitter account also shared a statement on the acquisition, positioning the deal as a way to reinstall faith in the company after its CEO Joey Cuellar was removed from the company over sexual abuse allegations.
"We want to reaffirm that harassment or abuse of any kind has no place within Evo or any of our future events, and we're taking every precaution to make sure members of our community will always be treated with the respect, dignity, and decency you deserve," reads that statement from Tony and Tom Cannon.
"In order to deliver on the trust you have all put in Evo, we realize that we need an experienced strategic partner who truly respects the spirit of the FGC. This is why we're excited to announce that Evo has become part of the joint partnership of Sony Interactive Entertainment and RTS. The new partnership is committed to bringing amazing tournaments and competitive gaming experiences back to you this year and beyond."