Another big-name Twitch streamer has signed an exclusive deal... this time, to remain exactly where she is. Imane "Pokimane" Anys has struck a "multi-year" deal to stream exclusively on Twitch. The terms of the arrangement weren't revealed, but she and United Talent Agency had significant bargaining chips. Anys is one of the top ten most-followed streamers on Amazon's service with 3.9 million supporters, and she's the most-followed woman -- losing her would be a significant blow.
It may seem odd to publicly celebrate that nothing is changing, but the Pokimane announcement is coming after months of high-profile defections from Twitch to rival services like Facebook and YouTube. Ninja and Shroud are the best-known examples, but the list includes other notables like CouRage and Corinna Kopf. While the reasons for leaving vary, they frequently involve cash (likely millions of dollars for the biggest deals) and more opportunities for sponsorships and product tie-ins.
With this deal, Twitch is signalling that it's aware of the talent drain and is willing to pay a premium to keep at least some of its stars onboard. The question is whether or not there will be a surge of similar deals, and whether Twitch (really, Amazon) will be ready to pay what it takes if many more streamers consider leaving. The livestreaming world is increasingly matching the sports world with stiff competition over exclusives, and it might only get fiercer if Twitch's challengers see more opportunities.