The Key Market Stats and Growth Trends of the Esports Industry in 2021The Key Market Stats and Growth Trends of the Esports Industry in 2021
Did you know that the monthly esports viewership is slated to touch 26 billion in the US in 2021? This is expected with competitive games becoming a part of the popular culture here. As a result, media companies, big brands, and global investors are now paying attention to the trend in the esports industry. Endorsements by celebrities like Drake and Michael Jordan and media channels like ESPN’s growing coverage of esports have been responsible for this shift.
The popular culturalization of this industry has led to a huge amount of investments and boosted revenues here. Gaming and live streaming have helped this trend further and videogame-specific platforms like YouTube Gaming or Twitch have allowed fans to communicate directly with teams. ESport organizations such as FaZe Clan have even started selling merchandise. All this has led to the industry experiencing a big surge in investments from both private equity firms and venture capitalists. Investments have gone up substantially in the last few years and these are being divided amongst digital broadcasters, esports organizations, and tournament operators.
With the coronavirus outbreak, nature of eSports has also changed dramatically. The lines between live streaming and esports have become blurred. As the pandemic raged on, viewership spiked significantly across live-streaming platforms. The esports market may have not performed as well at this time but there was a lot of growth in markets where there had hardly been any activity in the past.
Like traditional sports, the esports teams now have franchises, owners, endorsements, and cash prizes from winning tournaments. All of this contributes to their annual revenues. Once the pandemic is over, esports leagues are likely to reach out to more people through game play with regional teams, similar to traditional sports leagues.
According to projections, the esports ecosystem is likely to cross $1 billion in terms of revenues. Money is expected to flow into the system from live event sales, media rights, sales of merchandise, and in-game purchases. The maximum revenues are expected to come from advertising and sponsorships. Currently, Europe, North America and the Asia Pacific are the biggest esports markets as far as revenues and audiences are concerned. According to PwC estimates, Europe will reach $138 million this year while North America will reach $300 million. Remaining countries make up only about 15% of the total revenues from esports. However, there are some potentially fast-growing regions that one should watch out for, like Latin America. According to estimates by PwC, revenues here are expected to reach $23 million by the next two years.
It is believed that the future of this industry will be most likely powered by the growth of mobile technology. That will bring in more traffic and lower the barriers to entry. As of now the mobile gaming segment makes up almost 45% of total games market. Perhaps the biggest reason for growth in esports industry has been awareness about it. This awareness has been there since 2015 but the numbers rose rapidly in the next few years.
The increase in awareness and viewership means that brands will not have to market themselves aggressively to reach out to its new viewers. Esports marketing will allow them to expand their audiences and deliver marketing messages via more engaging channels. These statistics mentioned above reveal the fast growth in the esports industry until Covid which cut down number of large scale events. Now gamers are spending more and more time on streaming platforms, although competitive content is now limited. However, this is only for a short while because things will start opening up soon.