Online sports gaming market reaches 1.9 billion in 2018

11 November 2015

The total value of the online sports gaming market globally is expected to grow spectacularly in the coming three years, from $748 million today, of which the majority stems from sponsorships and advertising, to $1.9 billion in 2018.

In recent years the eSports market, also known as electronic sports or online sports gaming, has grown strongly across the globe, on the back of the rise of video gaming in general and in particular the emergence of online streaming services. The most common eSports category takes the form of televised eSports – for instance Twitch, an online streaming platform that regularly streams popular eSports competitions, last year hosted roughly 14 billion minutes of video to its viewers, while on its best day of the year the platform recorded more than 4.5 million unique views. Organised multiplayer video game competitions, predominantly between professional players, and tournaments form a major part of the eSports landscape.

Size of global eSports market

Data from Superdata shows that the eSports industry is now worth $748 million, with sponsorships and advertising accounting for $579 million, representing 77% of the total. North America and Europe account for almost $400 million, over half of global revenues, while Asia, worth $321 million, is slowly giving way to western investment, say the researchers. “eSports are becoming more mainstream and that has attracted traditional media channels,” comments Stephanie Llamas, Director of Research and Consumer Insights at Superdata. “Even old-fashioned brands are taking notice and there is a growing interest in advertising to the coveted millennial male demographic on a medium they know well,” she adds.

Looking further ahead, the boom is expected to continue, says Llamas, the drivers of growth will however increasingly shift to more direct revenue source, sources such as betting sites and amateur tournament platforms. By 2018, the eSport industry will be worth a staggering $1.9 billion, a development which is set to benefit all players in the industry, yet at the same time reshuffle the cards. Growth lures in competition, and the contest is heating up, find the researchers, with publishers finding themselves in a battle to make mobile eSports the next frontier, while amateur tournament platforms will have to find ways of boosting profitability amidst a saturating market as supply will growingly exceed demand.

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Grant Thornton advises on deal for high-growth cloud hosting firm

08 April 2019

Grant Thornton’s North West Corporate Finance team has completed its first TMT deal of 2019. The professional services firm advised the shareholders of Hosted Desktop UK on their investment from specialist SME lender Beechbrook Capital.

Technological disruption and changing consumer behaviour have continued to affect top Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) players in recent years. The industry has seen revenues border on stagnation over the past decade, at 0.4% annual growth since 2008. While the industry is keen to develop new digital services and models to meet market challenges, they face a range of barriers – meaning the recruiting of talent specialising in innovative software and technology has become a key goal for the industry.

Amid this, Hosted Desktop UK (HDUK) provides cloud computing services to small and medium sized businesses across the UK. The firm’s cloud solutions provide businesses with IT reliability, flexibility, value for money and business continuity. As the firm bids to grow in the UK, with demand for its disruptive technologies high, HDUK has secured a key investment from specialist SME lender Beechbrook Capital.

Grant Thornton advises on deal for high-growth cloud hosting firm

The transaction was Beechbrook Capital’s maiden deal from its latest UK SME credit fund, which supports small and medium-sized businesses in the UK with EBITDA of £1 million and above. Manchester law firms Pannone Corporate (sell-side advice, led by Mark Winthorpe) and DWF LLP (buy-side advice, led by Jonathan Robinson) also advised on the deal, while Grant Thornton’s North West Corporate Finance team advised HDUK’s shareholders.

The deal represents the Grant Thornton branch’s first TMT deal of 2019, with a team comprised of Partner and Head of Corporate Finance Peter Terry, Manager Daniel Brecker and Assistant Manager Cariad Mudford advising HDUK shareholders on the investment. It is the third key deal in the TMT sector that the GT North team has advised on in the last 18 months, following the £16.5 million sale of Salford-based Sonassi to Iomart in December 2017 and NorthEdge Capital’s investment in Yorkshire company iPortalis in August 2018.

Grant Thornton’s Peter Terry said of the news, “As our domestic and working lives become ever-more technology dependent, it’s no surprise that there continues to be strong investor interest in any asset in the cloud computing, data infrastructure and connectivity space… We were pleased to work with Beechbrook Capital on the first deal in its new fund. It shows that despite the well-documented uncertainties in the economy there are still good funding options for dynamic SMEs and their management teams.”