eSports betting in Asia: towards becoming the dominant sports betting market

eSports have invaded the sports betting industry so massively and so intensely, that today it is really difficult to find bookmakers having no special sections on eSports betting markets. Online betting sites in the Philippines as well as online sportsbooks in the great majority of the Asian markets, are offering a full list of eSports bets with competitive odds and prices so as to meet the growing demand of Asian bettors for competitive video gaming wagers.

Much has changed since eSports entered the landscape of the sports betting industry. Bookmakers in Asia now give great emphasis on games like DOTA 2, CS:GO, Fortnite and League of Legends offering a very wide selection of betting markets, designed to satisfy the different tastes and preferences of punters.

In fact, for many online betting sites, eSports betting accounts now for the dominant share of revenues compared to traditional, physical sports. eSports can even compare to the popular football betting or basketball betting, threatening their dominance so far in Asia. Some analysts see eSports betting becoming the biggest segment of online gambling in a few years.

How have we come to eSports?

Well, technology is changing sports in every possible way. From boosting the performance of athletes through sophisticated, advanced, and customized training systems to creating unique monitoring systems for the physical condition of athletes and from the digitization of sports aiming at improved accuracy and efficiency to the ability to collect and process big data that make a difference in the sports’ functions. But there is more to it. Technology is creating an entire new world of sports, one that we had never imagined some years ago.

Besides the apparent impact of technology on how sports games are played, how they are watched by fans, and how they are broadcasted, one of the biggest effects of technology is the development of a new kind of sport, eSports. Competitive video gaming has reached a whole new level with the evolution of the internet, ICTs and digital technologies.

People now play eSports just like traditional games, they watch eSports games just as they watch conventional sports games and they also bet on eSports just like they bet on regular football, basketball, tennis, baseball and the rest of the popular games receiving widespread bettors’ attention.

Be it the complete perseverance of the internet, the development of web 4.0, or the fact that Asians are considered to be among the most tech-savvy punters, the growth of eSports is absolutely impressive.

In 2020 the eSports’ betting share of the total sports betting industry in Asia accounted for nearly 20%. This means that 2 out of 10 bets placed on bookies by punters were wagers on competitive video gaming. In 2021 this figure was doubled for the younger bettors, in the age group 21-35. This group is the fundamental fan base of eSports’ events.

By 2028 it is anticipated that eSports betting will grow annually at nearly 13% worldwide. This growth will be headed by Asia, where growth is expected to largely surpass this figure, reaching almost tripled levels of eSports’ betting share compared to today.

eSports is now the hottest and most advanced thing you can have in the blended world of recreational activity and sports-like habits. Competitive video gaming has grown into people’s lives and it is about to go nowhere. Betting on eSports has become almost equivalent to betting on traditional sports and this is something that will be felt in the following years to come.

Asia is a pioneering region when it comes to eSports and betting on eSports. Although Asian bettors did not embrace eSports at the very beginning of their launch, they are now the most devoted supporters and fans and of course the most enthused punters.