The COVID-19 pandemic has laid waste to global economies and annihilated entire industries. However, some industries have fared better than others during the outbreak. One of these is the esports sector and its unique business models. Once the reserve of video gaming enthusiasts, the esports market grew in popularity in recent years and managed to weather the COVID storm as necessity drove gamers and spectators online.
2020 Esports Business Model
The global online gaming sector experienced a surge in profits in 2020, with more than 21.1 billion dollars generated in just 12 months. This equates to significant year-on-year growth, with the growth margin unprecedented when compared to previous years. While the online gaming market always fared well, this boom in revenue is largely down to gamers being forced to play online by necessity. By the end of 2020, there were more than 2.69 billion gamers worldwide. By the end of 2021, that number looks set to exceed 2.8 billion.
How Has Esports Survived?
One of the key reasons the esports industry thrived during the pandemic is that months-long lockdowns forced consumers to pursue new pastimes away from their usual routine. With billions at home without 9-to-5 to keep them busy, user engagement with video gaming and esports rose substantially.
Although live events and attendance have long been a staple of esports, the nature of virtual gaming has allowed the sector to overcome the issues that have throttled conventional sports. That is not to say that the pandemic hasn’t caused disruption to