eSports Betting and Carrier Billing

24 March 2020

Competitive eSports gaming is on the rise, thanks to the emergence of low latency, 5G cellular networks. Betting on eSports is now a huge trend, having gained traction over the last few years. Newzoo estimates that the global eSports economy will grow to be worth almost US$1.8bn by 2022.

eSports Explained

  • Casual gamers play video games for fun. Professional eSports, however, see gamers competing for millions of dollars, often with live audiences
  • Games are watched by millions worldwide via online streaming services like YouTube,, and even larger TV broadcasters including ESPN, with tournaments based on the games like Fortnite and Counter-Strike
  • The global eSports audience totalled around 450 million in 2019
  • In 2019, the League of Legends World Championship was the most watched eSport. During an almost month-long campaign, it was hosted in Berlin, Germany; Madrid, Spain; and Paris, France, totalling over 137 million hours watched
  • The second most watched eSport of 2019 was Dota 2’s The International 2019 with 88 million hours watched
  • According to Statista, over half (57%) of eSports frequent viewers and enthusiasts in 2019 were located in Asia Pacific, with 16% in Europe, 12% in North America and 15% in the rest of the world

The Growth of eSports

  • Total eSports viewership is expected to grow at a 9% compound annual growth rate between 2019 and 2023
  • Globally, it is expected that there will be 645 million viewers by 2022
  • The pop-culturization of eSports has fuelled growth, mainly attributed to the social component of live streaming and gaming
  • Mobile is set to become the future of eSports which will further “reduce barriers to entry and allow even more gamers and fans to pour in”
  • In 2019, the mobile gaming segment was set to total 45% of the global games market
  • Millenials are one of the highest growing demographics, with millennial-aged viewers twice as likely to watch gaming events on a streaming platform

Betting is the Single Biggest Opportunity in eSports

Online gambling has traditionally focused on conventional sports like football, however the emergence of eSports allows a new generation to get involved – and opens a new window of opportunity.

The challenge and opportunity is not attracting the gambler to bet on eSports, but instead attracting and onboarding the eSports fan; “what appeals to a 23-year-old esports fan that has less experience with betting, is different from what is currently being offered to a 35-year-old football fan”

How Can Carrier Billing Benefit eSports?

  • Direct Carrier Billing is available to any mobile phone owner
  • Most eSports fans are located in markets where debit/credit cards aren’t widely used, therefore carrier billing is a great mobile payment alternative solution
  • Carrier billing is deployed by many game developers and is among the most popular alternative payment methods for digital gaming
  • Carrier billing is seamless and secure and it comes with spending limits/caps, therefore it offers a responsible payment solution

Carrier Billing is relatively new to the eSports betting industry, but it’s evident that there are many opportunities for growth. Carrier billing offers users a frictionless, convenient customer pathway like no other payment method, optimising user experience.

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