As confirmed by Valve and ESL, the recently completed ESL One Cologne event saw teams gather a massive $4.2 million dollars in total - split between prize money, stickers and signature sales.
Coupled with a total viewership of 27 million people and a peak concurrent number sitting around 1.3 million, HLTV reported that this event saw a massive 180% increase in crowd-funded dollars over ESL One Katowice, which involved $1.5 million in community support given away.
This method of funding means that teams and players must market themselves well, hoping to sell in-game stickers and signatures to adoring fans to represent them whilst playing in public servers. This is slightly different to the Dota 2 model, which sees funding go directly into the prize pool, whereas ESL One sits at a static $250,000 no matter how much is raised.
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