Streamed e-sports is becoming increasingly popular in Sweden, according to Mediavision.
Even though the UEFA Euros attracted many viewers in June, daily online viewing of e-sports was – for the first time ever – larger than that of traditional sports during this year’s second quarter.
There is no doubt that consumer interest in e-sports is growing rapidly. The global e-sports audience was estimated to close to 230 million in 2015, according to the analysis company Newzoo. The same source calculated global e-sports revenue to 325 million dollars last year. Just like in traditional sports, revenues are mainly derived from rights, events, and advertisement.
In Sweden, MTG in particular has targeted the e-sports market over the last years, hoping to capitalize on the increasing demand. The company has, among other things, acquired one of the world’s largest e-sports companies, ESL, and Swedish Dreamhack. Earlier this year the company also launched the global broadcast channel eSports TV.
Mediavision notes that viewing of e-sports is on the rise also in Sweden. For this year’s second quarter, the share of daily online viewers that watched e-sports or gaming grew to twelve percent, corresponding to five percent of the entire population. In comparison, traditional sports were watched by ten percent of daily online viewers, or four percent of the Swedish population. E-sports has thus surpassed traditional sports in daily reach online.
The interest for e-sports is largest among the young. In the group 15-34 year olds, one in five of daily online TV viewers watched e-sports, twice as many as those who watch traditional sports on the web.
“This development has been very rapid. One year ago, traditional sports was still a bigger genre online, but driven mostly by the young, e-sports and gaming has overtaken the lead. The fact that e-sports attract higher viewing the same quarter as an ongoing UEFA Euro Championship makes it even more interesting. This leads us to believe that more actors will venture into this new market in coming years, with anticipation of high growth,” said Arvid Åsbrink, senior analyst at Mediavision.