The esports market is becoming increasingly popular, with a new wave of young gamers vying for cash prizes in their favorite games including Street Fighter, FIFA, Madden, and NBA 2K.
The casino industry has taken note and some websites are already taken bets on individual gamers and players winning, reports . The projections for gambling in this industry are huge, particularly across the US, where there has been an estimated $12.9 billion to be wagered by 2020.
Esports has a lot of characteristics that appeal to bookmakers, including the ability to offer real-time match data and watch games live, which mirrors typical real-life sporting events. The use of live streams allows for in-play meeting which is something that bookmakers have thrived on in recent years – and the way that they can accommodate with regularly changing odds.
The UK is another nation starting to get on board. In fact, the UK had more tweets about esports than any other country in Europe. Whilst UK bookmakers like William Hill and Ladbrokes originally ignored this, some are slowly starting to take note of the following that the likes of FIFA 19 and Fortnite have brought to the table.
Esport gaming events are being much larger functions and are attracting bigger crowds, including Insomnia 62 which takes place in Birmingham and . The regional casinos across the US and Europe are starting to see the overlap with esports and betting and are looking to host more esports events on their premises – something that would improve footfall as well.
Potential issues could arise over betting on individuals who are under the age of 18 or 21, depending on the area and other controversies that shed darkness on real-life sporting events such as match-fixing and drug use.
Nonetheless, the trends are showing that esports are on the rise and the integration with online gambling is nothing less than an inevitability.