The latest research firm to peer into its crystal ball and cast its esports predictions out into the world is Juniper Research which has assessed that, by 2021, esports and streamed games content will be worth $3.5bn (£2.8bn).
This is a notable increase from the current analysis which places its value at $1.8bn (£1.4bn) in 2017. The report, titled ‘eSports, ‘Let’s Play’ & ‘Watch Play’: Competitive Tournaments & Content Streaming 2017-2021’, notes that whilst the subscription model, the likes of which is seen on Twitch, will contribute significant revenue, it’ll be the advertisers who reap the rewards.
The assessment is that by 2021 almost 90% of esports & ‘Let’s Play’ viewers will also watching ad-supported casual games streams. When it comes to esports Juniper Research states that content will increasingly be monetised through other revenue streams. Merchandise is one major opportunity, whilst time-limited content such as in-game items will become more commonplace as will access passes. The International is a proven model in raising funds via focused in-game Dota content, but there remains a space for teams, tournament organisers, developers and more to increase revenue by expanded merchandising at events.
This report also looks at the wider industry within and around esports of streamed game content. With the likes of Twitch adding features such as the option to purchase games directly through streams, with the streamers taking a small percentage of each sale, this is a market which will continue to grow. The reportt looks at the battle between Twitch and Youtube, and also considers the involvement of more traditional media platforms such as Ginx TV.
The full report is available to purchase whilst you can create an account with Juniper and gain access to the condensed whitepaper version for free here. Juniper Research is one of a handful of research and analytical services firms that has started to look seriously into esports. It provides consultancy, analyst reports and industry commentary.
Esports Insider says: Streamed game content and esports as markets are closely intertwined. Both are growing at a rapid rate and whilst we won’t comment on the numbers until we see a more detailed breakdown, the general points about the growth of merchandising and time-limited content ring true.