The following post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga.
Esports has experienced a surge in popularity in recent years and 2020 was no exception. As many were forced to stay home due to the pandemic, esports flourished in part to its already established digital landscape.
Although, the hub around esports is nothing new. Current estimates suggest that there are about 2.7 billion gamers globally (with some estimates as high as 3.5 billion).
And not only has there been a large number of players, but esports tournaments have received significant viewership as well. Looking at the 2019 League of Legends Championship, the competition amassed a larger audience than the Superbowl that same year. The Championship Finals drew in 100 million unique viewers while the Superbowl received about 98.2 million.
In addition to the large audience base, fans worldwide consumed over 1 billion hours of content during the competition’s 5-week run.
“But despite the abundance of eyeballs, esports still lags significantly behind traditional sports in terms of monetization per viewer. This creates a really exciting opportunity for companies like ours in the space over the next several years,” said Jeff Cohen, VP of Strategy and Investor Relations at Esports Entertainment Group.
Esports Entertainment Group Inc GMBL is an online esports and gambling company that is focused on building the future of esports betting & entertainment. The company believes that wagering will play a major role in helping monetization in the space over the next few years.
The Three Pillars
Esports Entertainment Group structures its business across three pillars — all of which work synergistically to provide more pure-play investment opportunities in the esports market.
- Esports Entertainment and Infrastructure - the first pillar consists of EGL (tournament platform), Helix eSports (entertainment center), ggCircuit (cloud-based software for gaming centers), and Genji (esports analytics provider)
- Esports Wagering - the second pillar consists of both Vie.gg (esports wagering platform and LANduel (player-vs-player video game wagering platform)
- iGaming & Traditional Sports Betting - the third pillar consists of Argyll Entertainment (traditional sportsbook & iGaming) which operates under the brands SportNation and Redzone.bet
“The important thing to note here is really the synergies between the pillars and the diversification of revenue streams,” said Cohen. “We think that diversification really differentiates us from our competition and space.”
Recent Acquisitions / Announcements
Given the fan crossover, EEG acquires players and companies in both esports and traditional sports betting. And the company had a big buying year in 2020 with the acquisitions of multiple companies.
Esports Gaming League (EGL)
Last month, the company announced that it finalized its agreement to acquire Esports Gaming League (EGL) — a tournament platform for online gaming events. EGL’s platform hosts live events where players can compete as well as consume their preferred esports content.
Events are monetized through sponsorships, streaming broadcast rights, advertising, tickets, and other revenue such as merchandise and food and beverage.
“What we found is that during the pandemic traditional sports teams are struggling to engage with their fans without having them in the stands,” said Cohen. “And because of the online nature of esports, as well as the crossover between traditional sports fans and gamers, we believe we have a solution for them with our current platform.”
The company also recently announced the integration of Aim Lab — an FPS performance training platform. This adaptive AI program is designed to help players go from youth to pro. It does so by analyzing the player’s motor and cognitive skills, then adapting “tasks” for training.
Aim Lab will be accessible through Esports Entertainment Group’s Helix eSports Lan center and ggCircuit software.
EEG’s Malta gaming licensed subsidiary, Esports Entertainment (Malta) Limited, signed an asset purchase agreement to acquire Lucky Dino Gaming Limited — an online casino operator and platform.
The acquisition of Lucky Dino will allow the company to expand its access to two popular esports markets, Scandinavia and Europe. The acquisition will also provide ESG with cross-sell opportunities within its various betting platforms.
On December 15, 2020, Esports Entertainment Group announced a multi-year partnership with the Philadelphia Eagles in which the company will serve as the first esports tournament provider for an NFL team.
As part of the agreement, the company will host bi-annual Madden NFL esports tournaments for the Eagles through the EGL platform. The Eagles will also become an EEG shareholder.
This strategic partnership between EEG and the NFL team exemplifies the crossover being made between esports and traditional gaming by introducing Eagle’s fans to the world of esports gaming.
The preceding post was written and/or published as a collaboration between Benzinga’s in-house sponsored content team and a financial partner of Benzinga. Although the piece is not and should not be construed as editorial content, the sponsored content team works to ensure that any and all information contained within is true and accurate to the best of their knowledge and research. This content is for informational purposes only and not intended to be investing advice.
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