by Staff Writer in
eSports Betting News

In the past two years, the League of Legends EMEA Championship (LEC) has experienced significant organizational changes, with esports teams affiliated with prominent streamers entering the league.

Notably, Karmine Corp, co-owned by French streamers Kamel ‘Kameto’ Kebir and Zouhair ‘Kotei’ Darjimassive, and MAD Lions KOI, co-owned by Spanish streamer Ibai Llanos, are among these teams.

Their first-ever matchup in the LEC on January 15 became a historic moment, breaking viewership records for the league.

The clash between these teams garnered immense attention, largely fuelled by the massive followings of their owners and their passionate nationalistic fanbases.

Social media squabbles between the French and Spanish fanbases had already begun before the highly anticipated match.

The viewership numbers for the match were staggering, reaching a peak of 741,450 viewers, setting a new record for the LEC regular season and surpassing the previous winter season record of 467,042.

Karmine Corp and MAD Lions KOI not only delivered intense competition on the rift, but their owners’ influence also significantly impacted the broadcast’s success.

The French broadcast, driven by KC, achieved approximately 255,000 peak viewers, while the Spanish broadcast saw a peak viewership of 242,800.

Despite KC’s defeat, the match proved to be a win for the league in terms of viewership and engagement.

The journey of these two teams joining the LEC had been long-awaited, with both Ibai and KC expressing interest for years.

Ibai entered first with KOI, forming a partnership with Rogue’s parent company, while Karmine Corp secured their spot by purchasing a slot from Astralis.

After parting ways with Rogue in 2023, KOI merged with MAD Lions, continuing to compete in the league under a unified brand.

The LEC Winter Split 2024 marked their face-off, resulting in a significant viewership milestone.

Notably, Karmine Corp has been a central attraction throughout the first weekend of the LEC Winter Split, achieving remarkable peak viewership numbers.

Their match against G2 also contributed to breaking records, peaking at 644,000 viewers.

Compared to the 2023 average viewership of 271,000, the 2024 average of 400,000 represents a substantial improvement, indicating a positive trajectory for EMEA’s premier League of Legends professional league.

While Karmine Corp’s peak viewership is not yet in the all-time top ranks, sitting at 295th according to Esports Charts, their recent promotion to the LEC through an open slot is proving beneficial for the league in terms of attracting new viewers.

As the LEC Winter Split progresses and other major regions’ leagues kick off, the promising start of the 2024 season suggests potential growth and continued support throughout the year.

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