Goldman Sachs Thinks Esports Will Catch Up to the NFL

Finance outlet The Street has published a story on a recent report from Goldman Sachs on esports, speculating that the massive growth in that space is only a small hint at what’s to come. While recent analysis have marked the esports space at around 167 million people watching per month, Goldman Sachs thinks that number will grow to 300 million by 2022, becoming a true rival of the NFL.

Goldman Sachs attributes this possible growth to “the immense popularity of survival-based games like Fortnite, growing prize pools for esports tournaments, the rise of live-streaming, and improving infrastructure for pro leagues.” You can look at the structures of the Overwatch League and NBA 2K League for contemporary evidence.

These leagues, which also includes Riot Games’ League of Legends leagues, combined with major investments from sources like Tencent, are helping significantly with the financial side. Because of that, Sachs’ report states that esports will be able to “finally close the demonitization gap relative to other established sports leagues.”

Esports is moving more and more into the mainstream. TV deals with Disney, for example, are expanding, and Epic Games famously announced $100 million in prize pool money for the first year of official Fortnite tournaments. Goldman Sachs believes that movement alone will lead to a 14% growth in the next five years.

There is plenty of room for esports to grow. Data in The Street’s piece states that there are more than 2.2 billion active gamers, and only 5% currently are engaged with esports.

[Source: The Street]