eSports have been growing exponentially over the last few years and the industry is already worth $1.2 billion per year, with over 200 million active participants. However, this is nowhere near the tip of the iceberg, as there is clearly lots of space for further expansion in every sense, from bringing in new players and fans, to keeping the existing ones tied to their screens enjoying their favorite eSports longer.
Australian Football League (AFL) is just the latest of the major brands to be tied to the world of eSports. AFL has just announced its intentions to enter the eSports scene in a very big way, with a major part of it being a possible eSports tournament at the Etihad Stadium, which they recently acquired.
Along with this major tournament, AFL is looking for sports teams within their ranks to sponsor and form eSports teams, which would compete in major tournaments, in a similar way that many European football teams have done in recent months.
Why AFL Is Looking For A Place In The eSports Arena
AFL is a very big brand and the league alone is already worth hundreds of millions per year. However, eSports are a relatively new field and somewhat untapped source of revenue, so it is no wonder that the Australian sporting organization is looking to expand into the field.
With Australian sports teams sponsoring eSports players, the clubs would see millions of new fans potentially emerge among the Millennials, who may find regular sports to be boring and tedious at times. eSports on the other hand, are exciting and full of twists and turns that can be worth millions of dollars and even more fame.
This newly emerging field is now bringing in more and more sports organizations looking for their part of the action and it is no wonder to see the AFL join that pursuit.
What This Could Mean For eSports
A tournament of the size that AFL is promising is certainly something that eSports can always use. After all, the more tournament are held, the more popularity is given to eSports and with such a major even, it is certain that the mainstream media would catch plenty of the action.
AFL teams sponsoring professional eSports teams would also be beneficial to both the teams and the eSports industry in Australia as a whole. The fact that sports fans will be more exposed to eSports and that the eSports fans will see the football clubs as those putting their heroes into action clearly has mutually beneficial results, so we can expect the eSports industry in Australia to grow further if this deal does happen.
Whether eSports will continue growing at current trends globally remains to be seen, but all projections suggest that Australia will be one of the world’s hotspots for the growth of eSports, as hundreds of semi-professional teams are already awaiting their chance at the big leagues.
The introduction of AFL as a major part of the eSports game in Australia could very well be the tipping point to take eSports from big to huge in the area.