Esports Betting Will Soon Grow Beyond Merchandise and Ticketing in Revenues

Is esports worth to invest in as a bookmaker? We have looked at our own data and the latest market reports to help you understand whether or not esports is an investment worth it for bookmakers.

Bookmakers who are looking to enter esports or improve their current esports product will learn that esports is a tremendous business opportunity because of two reasons: The number of markets per match and the traits of the esports audience.

Esports vs. American sports

Like American sports, esports has a very stat-driven culture around it. In games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive fans heavily engage with detailed player statistics such as first kills, most headshots and many more. And just like in American sports the more data you have, the more business you can make.

We found it difficult to get our hands on high-quality esports data, so we developed our own proprietary systems that incorporate computer vision and machine learning technology to capture highly detailed esports data. In League of Legends, we collect more than 50 live play-by-play statistics from a single match, allowing our customers to create sophisticated markets and content.

Creating more than 50 live betting markets on a given League of Legends match is a great opportunity in terms of higher return on investment per match.

The Esports Audience

The esports audience consists almost exclusively of millennials, ie. persons born from the early 1980s to early 2000s.
It is a highly desirable demographic as they are generally high earners and difficult to reach through conventional marketing. A good esports product with a large coverage is needed for any bookmaker to fully engage with this demographic.

“From automotive and fashion to food and even the military, it seems that every industry wants a piece of the esports pie. And for good reason: time and time again, Esports Enthusiasts have proven how fully engaged they are with their favorite pastime and they are willing to spend big to show it.” Newzoo

Read more about the esports audience in this article.

Esports betting is establishing its roots

Esports betting has undergone a significant development with large bookmakers entering the space. Betting operator Pinnacle opened its first esports bet in 2010 and just recently reached 18 million placed bets on esports.

“Betting operators will continue to expand their sponsorship presence and will offer more forms of esports betting, such as live-action betting on results […]. We predict fans’ collective spending on esports betting will soon surpass their spending on merchandise and tickets.” Newzoo

With established bookmakers improving their current esports products, expanding sponsorship deals and engaging with an audience of high earners, the future of esports betting is expected to experience large growth in the near future.

8 Player Statistics in Esports

Here’s four player statistics for League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive that are relevant for the esports audience.

League of Legends (LoL)

In League of Legends, two teams play against each other in a series of “maps”, each team consisting of five players. Each player chooses a unique “champion” at the beginning of each map.

#1 First Blood
Which player was the first to kill another player. This is comparable to the first goal scorer in traditional sports.

#2 Kills
The total number of killed champions per player.

#3 Assists
An assist is an act of helping an allied champion kill one of the opponents. A player can either score an assist by hitting an opposing champion within 10 seconds before their death or by boosting the killer during that period of time.

#4 Gold
How much gold the team or player has gathered in a given round. Gold is the in-game currency of League of Legends. It is used by the players to buy items that provide their champion with boost stats and abilities. This is one of the main ways to increase the power of their champion to gain an edge in the game.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO)

In CS:GO, two teams play against each other. Each team consists of five players and are either playing as Terrorists or Counter-Terrorists. The goal of the Terrorist team is to detonate a bomb to blow up an objective whereas the goal of the Counter-Terrorists team is to prevent detonation.

#1 Round winner
This refers to which team wins a specific round in any given map. A game of CS:GO is typically played as a best of 3 or 5 maps, where each map consists of typically 30 rounds with a duration of a couple of minutes each The short length of the rounds make them ideal for bounded betting in the same way “plays” are in American football.

#2 Kills
The number of killed opponents per player. A round is won by either killing the opposing team or by detonating/defusing the bomb.

#3 Headshots
The number of headshots per player, the most effective way to kill an opponent. Creating a market on how many headshots for a given player, round or weapon is a great way to enage the audience.

#4 Kill to death ratio (K/D).
The kill to death ratio is simply kills divided by deaths and gives an easy metric for whether a player is contributing to the team’s success or not.