Around 13% of the population of the UK participates in competitive gaming, according to research by Nielsen and Ex Corp. This figure means that approximately 9.4 million people in the country play the most popular video games in the UK competitively. These games include League of Legends, Call of Duty, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Their popularity and the rise of esports overall have positively impacted revenue in the UK esports sector. This impact means that esports revenue in the country is expected to reach $202.30m in 2023.
UK Esports revenue to hit US$202.30 million in 2023
Revenue in the UK esports industry should reach US$202.30m. Further revenue increases are then expected at a combined annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.43% to achieve a projected revenue figure of US$279.60m by 2027.
Several revenue sectors combine to create the overall total. These sectors include sponsorship and advertising, media rights, streaming, merchandise and ticketing, and publisher fees, together with the highest revenue producer, esports betting.
In terms of revenue, this largest sector is expected to have a market volume of US$152.10m in 2023. This figure could be an understatement as not all revenue for esports betting by individuals in the UK exists in the UK market.
Approximately 95% of around 24 million people who gamble each month in the UK do so at domestic sites that are licensed in the UK. However, non-public statistics show that the market for offshore non-UK licensed betting sites that are not a part of the GAMSTOP scheme is growing. This market exists as many UK citizens prefer to avoid the restrictive nature that comes with Gamstop.co.uk and betting at UK sites. This market exists as a significant number of UK citizens prefer to avoid the restrictive nature of betting at UK sites. It creates revenue and taxes that flow outside of the UK. So, revenue figures for UK esports betting and the esports industry do not fully reflect total engagement.
Even so, the figures are impressive and reflect a healthy UK esports market. If you look at the situation globally, you see the same pattern emerging of esports being a major contributor to overall gaming revenue.
The predicted revenue figure for the global gaming market is expected to exceed $300 billion by 2025. Of this, competitive gaming is expected to contribute an estimated $64.4 billion. This equates to 28% of the overall figure.
A closer look at how the global picture will be reflected at the UK level shows that the number of competitive gamers is expected to reach 17.1 million by 2027. This figure represents a user penetration rate of 24.5%. When you consider that competitive gamers in the UK spend around US$37.3 per month on gaming, this penetration figure represents a rise in potential revenue for the esports industry in the country.
Add to this sponsorship deals, like the recent deal between UK esports organization Lionscreed and London-based fintech company Plutus, and a positive picture of the future for UK esports emerges. This makes estimates of a CAGR of 8.43% until 2027 likely to be accurate.
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