Since legalizing sports betting in 2018, New Jersey has only shown positive results from the sports wagering market. In fact, the Garden State hit a new record for the month of January, with over $540 million wagered. That’s more than Las Vegas has ever made in revenue leading up to the month of January, having yet to surpass the $500 million mark.
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With the market in sports wagering doing so well, it points to the realm of esports being the next big, natural extension for the gambling market in New Jersey.
Esports: A Market Made for Millennials
In 2019 alone, data retrieved from Newzoo showed that esport’s global revenue passed the $1 billion mark. By 2023, viewership is projected to reach 646 million, at a steady 9% compounded annual growth rate, according to Business Insider Intelligence.
Extending the law to reach esports would diversify New Jersey’s growth market, especially since the esports market is predominately made of millennials, the generation who grew up on video games. It gives New Jersey a chance to diversify not only their growth channels, but the demographics making up their revenue earnings.
While physical, on-site gambling has typically appealed to the older demographic, online gamblers are by large made up of younger participants. Factor in esports gamblers, and you lower the overall age group of gambling across the different markets.
So far, the legalized sports law has bipartisan support in the lower house of the legislature and support from the state’s gambling regulator.
The Global Rise of Esports
For the past decade really, esports has been on the steady rise in the US, and it only continues to grow in popularity with each passing year. Thanks to the gaming generation and streaming culture, and online platforms like YouTube, Twitch and Mixer, competitive video gaming has become not only extremely popular, but profitable.
In fact, top participants in gaming tournaments are raking in seven-figures. Top players even become recognized celebrities in the world of esports. Video game players can even earn significant amounts of money through paid sponsorships, wearing jerseys with sponsors name with they live stream.
Esports popularity isn’t just found in the US either but has expanded its reach to countries like South Korea, Vietnam, China, Germany, and France, to name a few.