Newzoo, the leading games market research and data company, has just issued a new report on the future of the global eSports market, predicting the competitive gaming economy to grow to $463 million, a 43 percent growth from the year before.
A young and growing industry
The eSports market, although present in the background for some time already, has only recently started to gain more attention in global-presence terms.
Consequently, the available data and resulting analysis of the market is fairly new as well, with the first comprehensive report on the worldwide market being released only a year ago. Today, where the market has been developed to a certain extent and keeps growing, available data allows companies to analyze the industry and predict where it could be heading.
Predictions: more growth for eSports
2015 figures, provided by Newzoo, were summed up as follows: Total global revenue in the industry amounted to $325 million with 226 million viewers, which were split up into 115 million enthusiasts and 111 million occasional viewers.
For the future, Newzoo predicts revenues to grow up to $463 million, an increase of 43 percent compared to the year before. This is exciting information, but seeing the market’s development in the past months, nothing else could be expected. As more and more companies are getting involved in order to capitalize on the expanding eSports industry, the popularity and global exposure is growing with each day.
“This year has been dominated by the amount of investors getting involved in eSports. An increasing amount of traditional media companies have become aware of the value of the eSports sphere and have launched their first eSports initiatives. With these parties getting involved, there will be an increased focus on content and media rights.
All major publishers have increased their investment into the space, realizing that convergence of video, live events and the game itself are providing consumers the cross-screen entertainment they desire from their favorite franchises.”
The market research company predicts the audience to grow by 13.3 percent year-over-year. More eSports enthusiasts will definitely contribute to the future expansion of the competitive gaming market, where the viewing experience attracts more and more new fans.
A growing number of events from popular games like League of Legends, Dota 2, and Counter Strike: Global Offensive – there were 112 major eSports events in 2015 that generated an estimated $20.6 million in ticket revenues – is an additional sign of the positive feedback the industry has been getting in the last year.
“North America will lead the market”
The growing audience is a particularly attractive factor for online advertising, which is the fastest growing revenue segment within eSports, according to Newzoo.
According to Newzoo’s eSports Analyst, Pieter van den Heuvel:
“In 2016, North America will strengthen its lead in terms of revenues with an anticipated $175 million generated through merchandise, event tickets, sponsorships, online advertising and media rights.
A significant part of these revenues flows back to the game publisher, but across all publishers, more money is invested into the eSports economy than is directly recouped by their eSports activities.”
Besides the U.S., Asia also presents one of the most important areas for eSports, and will, according to Newzoo, continue contributing a large portion to the revenues pie.
“China and Korea together will represent 23 percent of global eSports revenues, totaling $106 million in 2016. Audience-wise, the situation is different, with Asia contributing 44 percent of global eSports enthusiasts. Growth in this region is, for a large part, fuelled by an explosive uptake in Southeast Asia,” said van den Heuvel.
With valuable growing demographics that are skewed towards consumers with a full-time job and relatively high income, the industry is in a good position to fulfilling the forecasts.