Adidas becomes Team Vitality's jersey outfitter

Charges were dropped for a man accused of helping Adidas funnel money to families of high-ranked basketball recruits. Adidas

Team Vitality has secured a sponsorship with Adidas for 2017 to make Vitality-exclusive gear, the team announced on its website Monday.

"It is an important sponsorship, as much on the financial standpoint as it is in terms of media, staffing and merchandising ," said Team Vitality's owner, Nicolas Maurer, to ESPN. "Adidas has demonstrated a true willingness to invest in esports alongside a high-profile organization and to accompany us throughout our partnership."

Vitality adds Adidas to a list of sponsors that includes Canal+ and Dailymotion, but Maurer said each partnership has its own role in the organization. He said the deal with Adidas also allows Vitality "to be a step ahead of the competition in terms of merchandising products in terms of quality and uniqueness."

The deal with Adidas is one of the first exclusive clothing agreements with an esports organization.

"We are extremely enthusiastic regarding this partnership, as it is a first in esports in Europe and North America," said Maurer. "When trademarks such as Adidas and Nike became involved in esports, they were already sponsoring clubs that were opening their esports section," as is the case for FC Copenhagen's Counter-Strike: Global Offensive squad, North.

"Overall, this sponsorship contributes to the democratization of esports and helps the latter in becoming mainstream," said Maurer.