On July 24, SK Telecom’s esports brand T1 signed a sponsor partnership contract with Hana Bank, one of the largest banks in Korea.
The partnership aims to develop financial products targeting the millennial fan base and as part of it, the first floor of T1's esports center in Gangnam, Seoul will be renamed to "Hana OneQ-T1 Hall of Fame". T1's uniforms will also wear Hana OneQ's logo going forward.
The minimum annual salary of LCK players is currently around 20M KRW (approx. $16,600), but next year, it will be raised to 60M KRW (approx. $50,000). This number is higher than the lowest annual salary of the four major professional sports (baseball, soccer, basketball, volleyball) in South Korea. Therefore, Hana Bank will provide financial consulting and dedicated PB (personal financial expert) to T1's players — including Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok — to manage their increased salaries more efficiently.
"I am glad that other players and I have a good opportunity to prepare for financial planning through the Hana Bank's partnership," Faker said.
"Athlete injury insurance", which is already active in other professional sports, will also be applied. According to T1 and Hana Bank, pro gamers are also exposed to risk of injuries, such as wrists and waists, and if a player is unable to participate in the competition due to an injury, it significantly affects their team. In this respect, Hana Insurance mentioned that they would plan to make a new insurance product for famous T1 players, such as "Faker's Right-Hand Insurance".
This year, T1 is actively collaborating with companies in various industries, including ones not directly related to gaming or esports, such as BMW, Nike, and Hana Bank is the newest addition to this roster.