E-Sports has become wildly popular in the last 5 years and as it grows so does its fan base. These competitive video game tournaments have created an industry with a strong revenue stream.
As a result the betters are interested. Speaking at the Casino Esport Conference in Atlantic City, executives with video game companies and casinos agreed there is a vast upside to getting the hundreds of millions of people who play online video games interested in the casino industry.
“Esports is only going to get bigger,” said Seth Schorr, chairman of Las Vegas’ Downtown Grand. “It’s not a fad.” It is expected the global audience for esports will grow 8.7% this year to $532 million. At least a third of that revenue is expected to come from China.
You can already see the excitement in Vegas when Luxor Vegas decided to build a 30.000 square foot esports arena for events and tournaments. Atlantic City casinos have also started hosting e-sports events.
Twitch, the online platform, has 3 million to 6 million people on it at any given time, said L. Anthony Gaud, an esports and media entrepreneur. That has vast potential to generate licensed gambling revenue as regulations evolve and expand.
“It’s similar to online (casino) wagering: Instead of playing blackjack or poker, you’re playing Angry Birds,” he said. “That environment is coming. There’s going to be a wagering angle, probably a large one. It’s going to be a really big thing.”
But the marriage of video game players and casinos has yet to be consummated on a meaningful scale.