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The next challenge for esports Striking the balance between creators and athletes

Report by Karol Severin and Sam Griffin
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20,000 foot view:  Esports organisations are past the initial ‘hype stage’. They are now in a phase where they need to make their business models work commercially. The ongoing adverse macroeconomic climate only exacerbates this. Sustainable long-term growth for esports organisations lies in the wider, gamer-related, entertainment culture – not just in the competitive part of esports alone. While esports companies have been embracing the power of media content and creator talent to an extent already, there is still a lot of room for improvement to unlock its full potential. 

Key insights 

  • Given the            macroeconomic climate, there will be            pressure on esports organisations to            and / or sustain profitability 
  • There are            differences in revenue per member            esports athletes and content creators),            from            to            per member
  • On average,            prize money only contributes approximately            a given esports organisations’ revenue
  •            of esports organisations’ members are esports athletes, while only            are creators
  • Reach and            are crucial for sponsorships, and            revenue must grow at esports           
  • Creators are            more effective than esports athletes            building and engaging audiences, as            by their follower metrics
  • Esports organisations            overdependent on a small handful            titles, risking disruptions and volatility            by unexpected game changes and           
  • Esports organisations            to recognise and play to            respective strengths of athletes versus            and adjust their allocation of            and terms accordingly

Companies and brands mentioned in this report: Apex Legends, Call of Duty,            FaZe Clan, Fnatic, Gen.G NRG,            Esports, League of Legends, TSM, Team Liquid,            Entertainment & Sports, Valorant,            Thieves