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How Much Do Online Casinos Invest in Esports?

How Much Do Online Casinos Invest in Esports?

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There is one thing that online casinos and video game tournaments have in common, they both started to develop in the early 90s. These were some important years for the development of eSports, and even though the tournaments and prize pools were modest, passionate gamers kept the trends alive. During that same period, online gambling was also experiencing growing pains, and it wasn’t nearly as prevalent as it is today. Both branches of the entertainment industry have a massive following now. What’s more companies in these sectors often collaborate.

In 2023, the iGaming sector has increased by over 13% compared to 2022, and it doesn’t seem that the industry has reached its plateau. The popularity of eSports is also on the rise, so it’s only natural that more investors are interested in these businesses. Here we will discuss, how online casinos collaborate with eSports and how much they invest.

The Rise of Esports Betting

The big rise in eSports happened between 2010 and 2020. During this same time, eSports betting became increasingly popular. In 2018, there were more than 400 million viewers, and many are dedicated fans who follow professional players and watch their streams. In other words, they have a good idea of how the match will go, and they like to bet on those matches. Right now, the eSports betting market is worth over 1 billion dollars. Since gaming, streaming, eSports and iGaming are all in high demand the betting activity will increase further.

One of the key elements that drives user engagement are game studios themselves. Regulate players do get all sorts of goodies simply by watching these events. Moreover, gambling companies have always had incentives for those who love to bet or play casino games. Nowadays, there are dozens of real money online casino Canada sites and they all have attractive bonuses. Some of these bonuses are specifically for eSports betting, and they don’t necessarily require a big deposit. In other words, it’s very accessible and cost-efficient to place bets.

Online Casinos' Involvement in eSports

Gambling businesses are getting more involved in eSports. Big gaming resorts sometimes host these events. They get the chance to attract guests and receive some brand exposure by doing so. However, these are mostly big brands that aren’t primarily operating online.

When it comes to online casinos they are usually subsidiaries of bigger companies. They aren’t as big or profitable as giant gambling resorts. Their only source of revenue comes from players who want to play casino games online or through the app. You can go through the list of casino apps Canada and you’ll see there are lots of sister sites or sites owned by the same company. These are all reputable brands, but it’s extremely rare to see one of them partner up with teams or athletes.

The parent companies though are more involved and often sponsor eSports teams. Right now there are several teams that have partnered up with gambling businesses:

  • NAVI (Natus Vincere) - One of the top CS: GO teams
  • FaZe Clan - Popular CS: GO and Call of Duty gamers
  • Ninjas in Pyjamas A big club from Sweden that appears in CS: GO, League of Legends and Rainbow Six competitions.
  • Team Liquid - One of the biggest names in the eSports scene, they participate in all sorts of gaming tournaments.
  • ENCE - Finnish team that is most well known for CS: GO.

The Future of Online Casinos in eSports

The way things stand the two industries will continue to collaborate. As mentioned, eSports betting is becoming more popular, and casinos, in general, love to support sports teams. That being said, when sports reach a certain popularity the leagues become more strict and try to keep their content family friendly. Since many kids watch gaming competitions, there will likely be more restrictions pertaining to brands that can be advertised.

There are also instances in which main sponsors become the centre of the scandal. A recent example would be FTX which was the main sponsor of TSM. The company filed for bankruptcy and many investors lost their money. Casinos are partially in the money business so if something similar were to happen it wouldn’t look good for the team. That being said, these are rare instances, and not everyone will hold the team accountable. Still, it wouldn’t be too surprising if teams become more picky and cautious when choosing sponsor companies.

A lot of gambling companies have been around for decades and are well-established, so it’s not the same as with FTX. Moreover, betting has a direct impact on the overall popularity of eSports so it makes more sense for these two branches to work together.

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All things considered, casino sponsors are very valuable to pretty much any sport. This is especially true for eSports because it is still a young industry. All fans want to see higher quality competitive gaming tournaments, and that requires resources. Ever since professional gaming became a viable career path we have seen more and more exceptionally skilled players. Knowing that you can devote hours to improving your skills and it won’t be for nothing, definitely changes things.

It’s worth pointing out that the gambling sector has also improved thanks to video game tournaments. Unlike boomers, younger audiences didn’t find betting and casino games that appealing. They grew up playing video games, which offer more immersive entertainment. Thanks to eSports betting, casinos have seen an increase in their user base.

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