The explosive growth and popularity of esports worldwide is hard to ignore when we talk about the gaming and media industry. The phenomenon has evolved from a niche segment to a leading and one of the largest global industries which is grabbing a maximum share of the ever-evolving gaming market. While esports has been gaining immense attraction in countries across the world, China has become one of the largest hubs for esports in the world and esports market in China is expected to grow its market size at an unprecedented rate through 2020.
Electronic sports, esports or competitive gaming which has been organized across the world is the battle of video games that require strategy, dexterity, and foresight. The esports tournaments provide endless options and opportunities to for the gamers to compete on top esports games in the world including Dota 2, Fortnite: The Battle Royale, Heroes of the Storm, Call of Duty, Overwatch, StarCraft II, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, among others offered by top esports companies. These global tournaments entice gamers to compete by offering prize pools that reach millions of dollars.
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China is Thriving in the Global Esports Market
China is already one of the world’s largest gaming marketplace and now the country is marking its position atop in the global esports market with hundreds of millions of viewers and players actively participating in numerous tournaments organized by top esports brands in China. The esports industry worldwide is worth close to US$ 700 million today and is expected to grow to more than US$ 1.7 billion by 2022. China is just behind the US and Europe in terms of market revenues and the country has one of the largest gamer-bases in the world. As per a market research, there are currently more than 170 million esports players and fans across China, a number which is surpassing every other regular sport.
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What’s Triggering the Esports Market in China to Boom?
Esports popularity in China was quite evident on November 4, 2017, when the grand finale of the League of Legends World Championship was organized at the National Stadium in Beijing. The event witnessed the presence of more than 40000 people who came to watch the esports battle between South Korean gaming stars; CuVee and Faker. The unparalleled growth and popularity of esports among millennials in China is undeniably fueled by the sustained audience interest, exciting esports games innovations, government initiatives, and strong support from publishers and investors. The cultural and sports government regulators are also responsible for China’s leading position in the esports industry.
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The esports boom in China also stems from the consistent efforts of top esports companies in China, such as Allied Esports and Tencent Holdings who are gearing up to open a large number of esports centers around the world. Combining these factors from the recent announcement to include the esports as an official medal sport at the Asian Games 2022, the esports market in China and other regions in Asia is set to hit a serious growth spurt in few years.
The penetration of mobile devices plays a pivotal role in the success of the esports industry in any region, as smartphones are significantly influencing the way gamers consume esports content. As mobile penetration is extremely high in Asia, especially in China, the region is witnessing the increasing adoption of mobile esports. China has already organized esports tournaments for 24 of the top 100 Android games. The increasing proliferation of mobile devices is indeed driving the entry of esports in China through mobile apps or webs such as Twitch, Mob-Crush, YouTube, or Kamcord.
Future Trends of the Esports Market in China
Given the growing popularity of esports in China and a tremendous increase in esports spectators over the last few years, many esports companies are striving to cash in the opportunities with new initiatives and innovations. Consequently, esports competitions and events are popping up across the country and the industry is undoubtedly getting more recognition, although it will take some more time for esports to become more professionally recognized. Nevertheless, one thing is for sure, the esports market in China will only grow over the next several years and is unlikely to slow down anytime soon.