Report: Esports to be worth almost $2b by 2022

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Copyright – ESL | Helena Kristiansson

Ovum, a market research and consultancy firm, has predicted that the global esports market will reach a total value of $1.9 billion (£1.44b) by 2022.

The report, entitled ‘E-Sports Revenue Forecast: 2017–22‘, estimates that the worldwide value of the market was less than $100m (£75.9m) in 2013, and sits at $733m (£556m) this year.

On top of the ludicrous growth the industry has already experienced, the report’s analysis of the coming years represents an enormous compound annual growth rate of 20.7% – leading esports to reach a worth of almost $2b in 2022.

Ovum’s report makes a number of assertations of the market’s future, including some other heady predictions. Among these is a claim that sponsorship will crest $578m (£439m) by 2022, a total of almost 33% of all revenue. This is reinforced by a prediction that streaming advertisement revenue will escalate rapidly, with a forecasted concurrent audience of over 10 million for the most popular events. To put that number in perspective, the current record on Twitch for concurrent viewership sits at 1,026,000 viewers for the grand final of ELeague’s January CS:GO Major. (It’s worth noting that while Twitch is huge in the Western world, viewership numbers in Asia – particularly China – are more difficult to assess, and may well be higher.) Note: Ovum doesn’t involve itself in making viewership number assessments but instead focuses purely on revenues. 

Another marker for growth will be the annual revenue derived from ticket sales, which are predicted to “soar” at a 21.1% compound annual growth rate. The primary foundation for that anticipated development is a burgeoning investment in infrastructure, which should see an increase in esports arenas and consumer contributions to prize pools.

A significant focus of the report is the mobile market: with mobile esports seeing tremendous progress in the last few years, the stage is set for “exponential growth” for the future. Indeed, Ovum makes a specific case to claim that owners of a “smart” mobile interface which makes competing in tournaments easy will be “very well placed” to succeed in the years to come.

For more information on Ovum or their E-Sports Revenue Forecast report, head to their website.

Esports Insider says: Accelerated growth of the industry in the last few years has been obvious, but these numbers are exceptional. The predicted audience growth is particularly fascinating, and the report on the whole is incredibly encouraging for esports investors and fans alike.