Although not every industry can pinpoint a precise start date, most people believe that esports began on October 19, 1972, when a group of Stanford University students gathered at the school’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory to participate in the first Intergalactic Spacewar Olympics. A year’s subscription to Rolling Stone magazine is the grand prize.
According to industry estimates, one player from Denmark received more than $3 million in 2019. And the prize money is only going to get bigger as the audience grows. Experts predict that the esports audience will reach 500 million in 2021 and 650 million in 2023, though the impact of COVID-19 remains to be seen. One of the leading esports platform is Betway, which is currently experiencing a surge in the number of registered players.
Sponsorships account for the majority of esports revenue, which is accompanied by broadcast rights, ads, merchandise and ticket sales, and game publisher fees. By 2023, revenues are expected to reach approximately $1.6 billion, though the pandemic’s eventual effect remains a wild card.
The Esports Ecosystem
Many people confuse esports with “gaming,” which refers to anybody, anywhere playing a video game. However, in recent years, there has been a concerted attempt to identify it as a full-fledged sport with its own stars, teams, and sponsors.
It’s easy to see why so many investors see esports as a solid, emerging industry ready to join the ranks of other major sports and entertainment segments when you look at the growth numbers and predictions. Its global popularity is shown by its inclusion in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, and a big effort is underway to make it a featured sport at the upcoming 2022 Asia Games in Hangzhou, China. The Danish government also hopes to develop Denmark as an esports pioneer, and has invested in a marketing campaign to do so. There are so many emerging esports promoters like Betway, where more people can engage and even earn rewards.
A growing number of celebrities are putting their time and money into esports. Bronny James, the son of future Hall of Famer LeBron James, made headlines last summer when he revealed his involvement with the renowned esports gaming team FaZe Clan.
Even the United States military has noticed, forming the Army Esports Team in 2018 as a gaming team as well as a recruitment tool.
The following are important components of the esports ecosystem:
Games Developers and Publishers:
These firms own the intellectual property for the games, manage the variables, and, in many cases, include some or all of the prize money. In 2019, the total amount of prize money was projected to be $373 million.
The majority of professional esports teams started out as amateurs. A team will draw investors and then generate revenue from alliances, sponsorships, licensing, and tournament prize money if it has a strong business model, is competitive, and/or markets itself well.
Endemic sponsors offer esport-related products or services, such as computer hardware. Non-endemic sponsors aren’t involved in esports in any way.
The most prestigious offline (LAN) tournaments are organized by a few large corporations, while smaller ones are organized by others.
Over the last five years, esports teams have become more adept at attracting investors, and they are raising significant funds, establishing training infrastructure, and attracting top players.
Check out a detailed esports page on the Betway website and may join a growing number of enthusiasts.