Video games never seem to go out of fashion and, by extension, neither do professional video game tournaments, also referred to as eSports.
While still a nascent industry, the eSports industry is already setting records for the level of engagement of video game fans and bettors, similar to the online gambling, or iGaming industry. And in what should be seen as an expected development, online casino gambling companies are fast exploring ways to bring esports betting onto their platforms.
But why would casino-oriented gambling operators seek to integrate eSports betting? There could be multiple reasons for this. Here are a few key ones.
An Expanding eSports Market
Unlike actual sports, eSports tournaments can nowadays be founded and organized more easily. So long as a game has a big-enough fan base, there is potential for an eSport to be formed. Now do a simple math by estimating how many hit games developers release each year and you should understand the unlimited growth potential of the eSports industry.
Globally, eSports betting is breaking records every year for the number of people (professional and non-professional gamers, organizers, fans, punters, etc.) engaged, revenue generated, and bets placed. Some analyses project the industry to reach over $200 billion by 2027. This is prompting gambling operators to explore their options for leveraging the market’s rapid growth.
Rise of Online Gambling
Online casino gambling is similarly a fast-growing industry. But the iGaming sector may just have seen a competitor in eSports tournaments, which create an online betting fever every time they take place.
And since most online bookies provide eSports betting and casino gambling, platforms that are strictly casino-oriented are seeing a need to get fast onboard and diversify toward eSports and the untapped betting potential it provides.
Varied Options For Betting
The betting options and markets for eSports events are just as diverse as for regular sporting events. But due to the nature of the sport, eSports betting providers can experiment with many industry-specific betting markets, such as, for instance team or player to win the first map (Starcraft 2, League of Legends, CS: GO), or team to record first blood (CS:GO, Call of Duty), just to name a couple.
With hundreds, even thousands of online slots, table game variants, game shows, lotteries, and bingo games, the gaming choice at your average online casino is pretty decent. That is, for the average gambling fan. But what if some of the casino’s clients are also interested in eSports?
eSports Create Marketing Opportunities
An explosion in eSports viewership has opened up marketing opportunities for casino operators, who are looking for ways to get more involved into eSports by striking sponsorship deals with teams and tournaments.
Providing eSports news, betting markets, and other services (live streaming) will keep some of the casino players more engaged, but will also target a specific player demographic – players who have no interest in slots and table game gambling, or traditional sports betting, but rather are exclusively drawn to eSports.