How the world of ESports Turned Into a Profitable Business

How the world of ESports Turned Into a Profitable Business

If you haven’t heard yet, the ESports industry is already a big deal. The market is anticipated to hit $1 billion in revenue this year for the first time, with nearly a half billion global viewers. That’s right, people pay to watch other people play video games. If you really think about it, watching ESports is really no different from watching professional athletes in action. These are undoubtedly the best players in the world at these particular games. But how did this industry turn into a profitable, money-making machine? Let’s take a look at the evolution of ESports into the entertainment beast it is today.

Everyone Loves Video Games

Well, that’s not exactly true, but you get the idea. Video Games have actually surpassed movies and television as the top grossing form of entertainment in the world. Unlike in professional sports where you really do need to be a world class athlete, ESports is easily accessible by  players of all backgrounds and physical abilities. It has truly become the sport of the people, and this is reflected in the massive number of viewers ESports events receive. The fact of the matter is, most people love some type of video game, and as the industry continues to evolve there are more and more types of games that are available for competition. Also, who wouldn’t want to say they play video games professionally for a living? It’s an attainable dream for aspiring ESports players, and one that seems more realistic than making a professional sports team!

Gaming is as Popular as Ever

Video game sales surged during the COVID-19 pandemic as many people were staying indoors and looking for things to do to pass the time. There is no better combination of staying at home and passing the time, than playing video games. This surge in popularity was capped off by the release of the next generation of gaming consoles from both Sony and Microsoft, as well as the always popular Switch console from Nintendo. It was the perfect storm for the video game industry, and it served to funnel an all new group of fans to the ESports world.

Don’t Forget About Mobile

Of any segment of the gaming industry, none are growing as fast as the mobile gaming sector. It makes sense, doesn’t it? The average American spends about five and a half hours every day on their smartphones. Why not play some games while we’re already there? Don’t look now but the mobile gaming industry is estimated to be worth upwards of $116 billion by 2024. There are even competitive mobile gaming leagues emerging in key markets such as China, as well as the global sensation that is Call of Duty Mobile. Don’t be surprised if we see massive growth in the competitive mobile gaming landscape as time goes on,

ESports has Turned into a Spectacle

ESports tournaments are frequently selling out arenas around the world and attracting millions of more viewers via live streams. The 2021 Garena Free Fire World Series in Singapore recorded a peak viewership of 5.41 million simultaneous views. These events are starting to put up viewership numbers that major sporting events do, and the industry is still in its infancy. It’s not just the viewer ratings that are off the charts either. At the International 10 Tournament earlier this year, the prize pool was a record $40 million USD for all players involved. The winning team of the game Dota 2 is called Team Spirit, and they took home a cool $18 million, the largest single payout for an ESports event in history.

ESports Betting is Definitely a Thing

Not surprisingly, with the increase in popularity and legalization of sports betting across the United States, ESports has emerged as a popular game to bet on. Billions of dollars each year are bet on sports and ESports and online sportsbooks, and the sports betting community is just starting to catch on to how fun betting on ESports can be. The inclusion of ESports at sportsbooks across the country and at offshore books, has certainly boosted public awareness and has cemented its legitimacy as an official sport. If you are looking to check out how you can bet on ESports events, the Draftkings Sportsbook app has betting lines for ESports tournaments happening all over the world.

ESports has Official Teams and Leagues

With the rise in popularity of ESports came the need to set up organized teams that can compete in local, regional, and international leagues. We aren’t just talking about a group of buddies teaming up to play a game together either. There are rigorous tryouts and interviews, as well as a thorough review of your gaming and content creation portfolio. Some of these teams are legitimately valuable, with some like Faze Clan and Team Liquid valued at well over $300 million USD due to investments and endorsements. There are even ESports teams for every major US city that will travel to compete at national and international tournaments. The competition is fierce though, and these teams will only select the best of the best to represent them on the global stage.

ESports is Truly a Global Sensation

While the main markets remain in North America, Asia, and Europe, other regions like Latin America are quickly closing the gap. In fact, ESports is one market that doesn’t necessarily reward those from a higher socioeconomic standing in a society like traditional athletics. ESports is quite literally available to anyone at any time, as long as you have a strong internet connection. As high speed internet is made available to more of the world, we should expect to see competitors from all corners of the globe competing at higher levels of ESports. This will only serve to further grow the sport and attract fans and viewers from even more countries. ESports certainly has a fanbase that is broader than most other sports and is well positioned to be a serious contender to traditional athletic-based sports in the near future.

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