eSports gets global
With eSports still maturing as an industry, many established sports currently view it as a way to engage a young, much-prized audience, says Nielsen in its Commercial Trends in Sports report. The Philadelphia 76ers NBA team last year became the first North American sports franchise to acquire its own eSports team, while electric motorsport series Formula E is staging parallel eSports events at all its races.
A number of European football clubs have also hired their own eSports players.
And major eSports stakeholders such as game publishers, distributers like Twitch, tournament organisers and teams, are now having to deal with commercial challenges familiar to those faced by those long-active in established sports.
The economics of the eSports market are starting to settle, though, with game publishers likely to be the key to future revenues, reckons Nielsen, and the segment is on course to become established as one of the leading global sports.