eSports has significantly grown in popularity over the past few years. The epicenters are undoubtedly Asia and North America, but the Middle East and the Arab world are also experiencing phenomenal growth in eSports gaming.
With increasing audiences and earnings, eSports is one of the world’s greatest expanding technological and entertainment sectors. Because gaming is evolving into a form of entertainment, retreat, and connecting with loved ones, the gaming market had a spending development peak within the first part of 2020.
Analysts predict that the global eSports business will grow from $776 million in 2018 to over $1.6 billion in 2023. Electronic sports are ready to be fueled up even more in the Middle East thanks to ample funding and a surge in players fueled by COVID-19 lockdowns. Let’s look at how eSports gaming is growing in the Middle East and its associated factors.
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What has led to the expansion of eSports gaming in the Middle East?
No single element is responsible for the heightened interest in this sector. Rather, different circumstances and factors combine to fuel the region’s enthusiasm for eSports. The number of internet users in the Middle East and North Africa is one of the most important aspects. Contrary to popular belief, a large portion of the population is connected to the online world.
The absence of possibilities to observe and participate in real-life sports is another important aspect contributing to the growing popularity of eSports in the region. These activities have been greatly restricted or perhaps stopped because of Covid-19. Millions of sports fans have started following eSports and betting on their favorite athletes and teams as a result of this fact only.
It is important to note that the popularity of video games has also been influenced by the spread and expansion of the mobile business. Many gamers also play only on their mobile device, making eSports more and more popular. The typical gamer in the nation is predicted to spend $115 annually. The market is expanding significantly due to the increasing use of smartphones and video gaming.
The gaming industry in the Middle East is expanding quickly, moving from simple games to virtual reality and competitive sports. According to a market study by YouGov, the gaming and eSports business in MENA is projected to experience growth due to a rising population of devoted players and good internet coverage. A sizable portion of gamers now considers watching video games online to be just as enjoyable as playing them, which is one of the factors contributing to the industry’s explosive development.
The term “eSports” has been cited in more than 4,000 news articles by Middle Eastern media outlets, notably Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. In contrast to 2019, there has been a 107 percent rise in overall media attention towards this sector. Additionally, from January 2021, “eSports” has been a recurrent phrase on social media sites with over 100,000 Middle Eastern references.
Gamers8 launches Fortnite Competition as the World’s Best Battle it Out in Riyadh for a $2m prize pool
Gamers8 launched the Fortnite competition, inviting some of the top gaming teams to compete for a grand prize of $2 million. Saudi Esports Federation organized this tournament at Boulevard Riyadh City.
The event was divided into Zero Build and regular Fortnite Battle Royale. Initially, a few issues were faced by the management. Many big names were invited, including Pokimane and Tfue, alongside other pro Fortnite players. However, many people refused to attend. Some players also criticized those who were participating. Despite all this, the tournament was a huge success, and the participating players included some of the top Fortnite gamers.
FaZe Clan also participated in the competition, and they were the favorites. However, the final event for the regular Battle Royale game was won by Malibuca and EpikWhale after an epic finish. Pinq and Anas came out on top in the No Builds Tournament after an amazing comeback.
This competition can be seen as another step by Saudi Arabia to bring global eSports gaming to the Middle East. Spectators can also engage more actively in eSports gaming in the Middle East by gambling on some of the best Arab casino websites.
What Does the Future Look Like?
The Middle East gaming industry is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 13.88 percent from 2022-2027. The region’s gaming sector is expected to experience significant development due to an increase in the use of online gaming solutions because of the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Because it is anticipated that different gaming providers will concentrate on growing their user bases and seeing rising profits after COVID-19, merchants are providing incentives and deals and are reducing costs for using their services.
Additionally, the Middle East gains from a sizable number of domestic investors. As a result, the gaming sector in the area has thrived owing to significant local investment. Market analysts expect that eSports will expand significantly in this area. It should be highlighted that eSports has various sub-genres and is not a uniform industry. Many different games draw a wide range of players and audiences. eSports offers a lot to its participants and supporters, from casual viewers to serious professionals.
Many investors are already considering this new investment scheme, which is the shining future of the rise of eSports. The spread of 5G networks is predicted to accelerate and enable further growth of the gaming industry among female gamers as well.
It is important to note that the industry could reach global proliferation in the upcoming years. The eSports industry is expanding to a global level. The Middle East and North Africa state’s eSports and video gaming sector is rapidly developing to include players worldwide and has a lucrative future ahead.