GLOBAL ESPORTS ECONOMY WILL REACH $905.6 MILLION IN 2018Posted on: Feb 22, 2018 By smartlaunch in News and trends,
Global Esports Economy will grow to $905.6 million in 2018 according to Newzoo, a year-on-year growth of 38%. The majority of this, 77%, will be generated directly (sponsorships and advertising) and indirectly (media rights and content licenses) through investments made by endemic and non-endemic brands that will spend $694 million, an impressive 48% increase since last year.
GLOBAL ESPORTS VIEWERS WILL TOTAL 380 MILLION THIS YEAR
The global esports audience will reach 380 million this year, made up of 165 million Esports Enthusiasts and 215 million Occasional Viewers.
THE FUTURE OF ESPORTS
An industry survey that Newzoo performed late last year found that the majority of respondents from teams expect esports to take another five to 10 years to mature fully as a business. The same research showed that brands and agencies expect the ecosystem to be fully professionalized in three to five years.
Several key factors will influence the speed of its growth, including whether esports can engage new fans through new formats and franchises, the growth of mobile esports, the success of the franchising structure, and team profitability.
On its current trajectory, Newzoo estimate the esports industry will reach $1.4 billion by 2020. If any of these factors accelerate, a more optimistic scenario places revenues at $2.4 billion.
NORTH AMERICA LEADS REVENUES; LOCAL INITIATIVES THRIVE IN WESTERN EUROPE
North America will remain the largest esports market in 2018 with revenues of $345 million. This will show impressive growth to reach $656 million by 2021. Most of these revenues will come from sponsorships, which will grow from $100 million in 2017 to $162 million in 2018. This is boosted by the number of North American teams that have welcomed new non-endemic sponsorships and the region hosting several of the world’s largest leagues and tournaments. The 23 million Enthusiasts in North America will generate $14.80 per fan this year, higher than in any other region.
Western Europe is the second-largest region in terms of revenues with $169 million in 2018. Western Europe, more than any other region, is characterized by localized esports ecosystems that operate next to regional tournaments and leagues. Sponsorship will remain the biggest revenue stream with $62.9 million, while media rights will total $26.6 million this year, a year-on-year growth of 49%.
China is also a booming esports economy with estimated revenues of $164 million in 2018 and a total esports audience of 125 million. China is notable for the growing popularity of mobile esports, including casual titles. For example, the Global Final of The Battle of Balls Professional League attracted an audience of 13,000 in Shanghai and 5 million viewers on various Chinese live streaming platforms.
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