Director of esports role shows that bookies mean business

By William Davis


Jun 10, 2021

Reading time: 4 min

Gamers have known it for years, but it’s becoming increasingly clear to big business that esports is going places.

There’s an old expression that says the bookies are never wrong because they only make decisions based on careful knowledge and research. So, when the gambling companies begin paying extra attention to the esports sector, you know something good is going on.

The current interest extends to more than simply offering betting markets on big esports competitions. This has been going on for years. Unibet, which was originally listed on the Swedish stock exchange but now operates legally in the United States, has offered esports betting since 2014. If you wish to get involved in that, be sure to make use of the Unibet casino bonus code.

As interest grew, bookies began to put esports on an even keel with popular sports like soccer and baseball. One bookie, Betway, even decided to appoint a director of esports role, responsible for promoting the sector and its betting markets.

Adam Savinson was the man given the role, with Betway hoping to capitalize on the 557 million people expected to view esports events this year.

Although esports only account for around 1% of a typical bookmaker’s revenues, there is enormous potential for this to increase in the coming years; hence Betway’s attempts to get ahead of the competition.

The challenge for all bookies is that it’s not a matter of luring people into betting, or educating existing bettors about the joys of esports. It’s about merging the two groups together.

As part of this exercise, Betway has gone one step further and now sponsors leading Counter-Strike: Global Offensive esports teams, including Brazil’s MIBR. This puts Betway firmly at the forefront of gamers’ minds in the lucrative Latin American market.

Betway isn’t alone in this either, with almost every major esports organization having an official betting partner.

Engaging with younger customers

A key reason for this is the average age of traditional sports betting fans. Consider these figures:

MLB: 57

NFL: 50

NHL: 49

NBA: 42

That’s a mature market, and one that the clock is ticking on as fans start heading towards retirement. On the flip side, esports fans and gamers, in general, are much younger. That’s what makes them such attractive targets for bookies.

While it’s true to say these younger people, aged over 18 to bet, of course, will not have as much disposable income as those older, mainstream sports betters, they may very well be cheaper to acquire in terms of marketing costs.

And best of all, bookmakers know they may be able to keep hold of some of those newly acquired customers for decades to come. Today’s esports bettors may very easily become tomorrow’s NFL, baseball, and hockey punters.

How bookies’ esports markets work

The markets for esports work in a similar fashion to mainstream sports. A bookmaker will have a trading team with specialist knowledge of specific esports, such as the best performing teams and individual players. For upcoming events and matchups, they will specify odds on who is more likely to win. Alternative prop bets may also be offered.

You can visit the bookmaker and look down the list of sports offered to find your preferred esport. There will be plenty of contests to bet on just about every day of the week.

Typical esports covered include Counter-Strike, League of Legends, Dota 2, Rainbow Six, VALORANT, and Starcraft 2. Just that handful of esports offers up extensive action almost every day.

If you fancy having a go at placing a bet, you will find a decent selection of bookmakers to choose from. But here are some handy tips to make sure you choose the best one:

  • Go for a licensed site so that you know your money and data is safe
  • Check the number of esports games and competitions that the site offers
  • Find an odds comparison site – there are plenty online – to find the most competitive
  • Look to join a site with a generous welcome bonus and ongoing promotions for existing players. Offers might be in the form of a matched deposit offer or free bets.

Then, once you have made your choice, read up on upcoming esports action, so you have some decent knowledge before placing any bets online.

And remember to bet responsibly at all times. Only bet with money you can afford to lose, and don’t chase any losses.