Esports Market Overview
The global esports market is expected to record a rapid growth during the forecast period. Major factors impacting the growth of the market include increasing worldwide mobile internet penetration, rising smartphone penetration, inclination of youth toward online video games, growing online gaming industry, increasing investments by game publishers in the esports industry, and rising awareness toward esports.
On the basis of revenue source, esports market is categorized into media rights, advertising, sponsorship, merchandise and tickets, and game publisher fees. Of these, sponsorship category held the largest share in the market in 2018. This category is also expected to witness the fastest growth during the forecast period. This is attributed to the increasing number of investments by companies for the advertisement of its products. In 2019, investments by the companies are expected to reach $692 million, an increase of 48%, as compared to 2018. Moreover, media rights category is expected to be the second largest revenue source in the market, globally.
Based on games, the esports market is categorized into multiplayer online, first person shooter, real strategy, fighting and action, and others, wherein others category includes casino games, card games, board games, and arcade games. Among these categories, fighting and action games held the largest share in the market in 2018.
North America held the largest share in esports market, globally. This is due to improved IT infrastructure, increasing viewership, and rising preference of youth toward playing online video games.
Esports Market Dynamics
Increasing awareness toward esports is one of the major factors driving the growth of the esports market. This is primarily due to increasing mobile internet penetration and rising number of campaign launches. According to GSMA Intelligence, the mobile internet penetration rate is expected to reach 61%, with 5.0 billion mobile internet subscribers by 2025. Additionally, the launch of various campaigns to promote esports is also impacting the market growth positively. For instance, in April 2018, a Korean-based esports team, Hanwa Life Esports, launched a public campaign, the Beautiful Game, to raise awareness for esports. The campaign intends to change people perspective related to the growing esports industry through a list of online and offline events.
Moreover, to increase viewership among the people, companies are focused toward broadcasting of esports events on TV, is another major factor, which also creates awareness among the people. For instance, in January 2018, Twitch.tv, an Amazon-owned live video streaming platform, partnered with Blizzard Entertainment Inc. and signed a two-year deal for the coveted broadcast rights of Overwatch League, worth of $90 million. Hence, with the growing number of campaign launches, rising mobile internet penetration, and broadcasting of esports events on TV, the esports market is expected to witness significant growth in the coming years.
Rising number of esports events at large level is one of the major opportunities for players operating in the esports market, globally. The major esports events that are scheduled for 2019 include League of Legends World Championship, The International, Overwatch League Championship, and Call of Duty World League. These events cite a chance for the players to invest in the market, which would further support the growth of the industry. Further, technological advancements in virtual reality esports league, and 3D scan and human facial recognition technologies also provide an opportunity for the market players to continuously develop and transform video games for users.
Esports Market Competitive Landscape
The competition in the esports market is highly competitive in nature and players in the market are focused toward product launches, partnerships, and other developments, in order to increase their market share. For instance, in May 2019, Riot Games Inc. partnered with GameOn Technology Inc. and developed Riot Latino América Esports Bot, the official and exclusive chat application for the League of Legends Liga Movistar Latino America (LLA). The application has enabled the company to connect with their fans in a better way by sharing content directly through messaging and audio.
Some of the major players in the global esports market are Riot Games Inc., Nintendo Co. Ltd., Kabam Inc., Hi-Rez Studios Inc., Activision Blizzard Inc., Tencent Holdings Limited, Microsoft Corporation, Sony Corporation, King.com Ltd., Blizzard Entertainment Inc., and Zynga Inc.
The report will cover country-wise esports market analysis. Some of the major countries covered in the report include the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, the U.K., Italy, Spain, China, Japan, India, South Korea, Australia, Brazil, South Africa, Mexico, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and the U.A.E.