Esports is no longer the industry’s best kept secret. The burgeoning industry has shown remarkable growth in recent years as an entertainment product in itself. As a result, the betting landscape has also developed at a remarkable pace.
Whereas previously there was few bookmakers who offered markets on esports, it’s now rare to find an operator who doesn’t have any at all. There’s a huge amount of competition going on across the world and the coveted millennial demographic are watching more and more in the way of esports competition.
We spoke to UltraPlay Head of Esports Trading Peter Ivanov to find out more about the esports ecosystem and how their business adapts to the ever-changing market.
SBC: What do UltraPlay see as the main tournaments in esports – from both a spectator perspective and a betting perspective? Do they differ?
PI: Main tournaments are pretty much the same from both spectator and betting prospective and they are ESL Pro Leagues and Tournaments, Dreamhack Tour, ELEAGUE branded tournaments and so on so forth.
The reasons for that are the hype that these tournaments bring within the community and that reflects upon the public no matter if they are just watching or betting as well.
The number of followers on the main tournaments is growing exponentially, which creates greater drive for the whole esports ecosystem to develop and improve in many aspects.
There are some small differences that stem from the general outlook of some tournaments where even the participants take them more relaxed and not so competitive which makes them harder to predict. This unlocks another characteristic as often spectators find them more attractive to watch rather than to bet on.
Our observation at UltraPlay, has brought us to the conclusion that the engagement level of esports fans is way higher when there are betting opportunities available on any given tournament. We strive to offer more and more specialized bets on big tournaments because the esports community is keen on measuring their level of understanding and predicting the outcomes in such high-profile tournaments.
SBC: What has changed in the last two years with regards to esports betting? What can a spectator bet on now, and what could they bet on back then?
PI: Esports betting has grown at an immense rate in the last couple of years, with UltraPlay being the major driving force behind that growth. Back in the days, offering who will win the match was the main and most often only offering that you can see among operators.
Nowadays, UltraPlay is providing an unprecedented amount of pre-match offerings on 25 different game titles. However, UltraPlay’s greatest achievement is the live offerings we support that enable our clients to offer five times more games with in-play betting coverage than any competitor.
Esport games are very dynamic and challenging and therefore betting on live games as they develop require the most profound knowledge of the game and that is why UltraPlay’s product is in so high demand among the esports fans.
The fact that punters can feel the adrenaline of winning together with their favorite players and teams make esports betting even more exciting. The sector is constantly innovating and developing adding more and more options for the punters to feel the superb betting experience.