eSports viewers hate hockey; VGambling to turn Antigua casino into eSports venue

TAGs: Antigua, eSports, grand princess casino, VGambling

eSports viewers hate hockey; VGambling to turn Antigua casino into eSports venueWatching eSports is as popular as watching baseball or hockey with US male millennials, according to a new survey.

Market researchers Newzoo are flogging a new report that shows 22% of US males between 21 and 35 years of age admit to watching eSports matches frequently. That’s only marginally less than the same number who cop to watching baseball and a couple points higher than those who enjoy watching hockey games.

eSports’ appeal among millennials pales in comparison to the 42% who regularly check out basketball games or the 43% who enjoy watching football. However, 56% of NFL viewers are over 35 years old, while just 27% of eSports viewers are in that same age bracket, meaning time is on eSports’ side.

The overlap between eSports and other sports is closest with basketball. There are roughly 20m eSports fans, of whom 9.6m also check out basketball games. Compare that to 8.7m eSports fans who watch football games, 6.6m who admit watching baseball while just 3.5m eSports fans cop to watching pucks drop.

On Monday, Canadian eSports betting hopeful VGambling Inc. announced that it had made a formal offer to purchase the Grand Princess Casino (pictured), a foreclosed property located in Jolly Harbour on the Caribbean island of Antigua.

VGambling says it plans to convert the property into a live eSports venue known as the eSports Coliseum. The second floor will be kitted out with gear that will allow up to 200 visitors to participate in live video game tournaments. The property will also host over 1,500 spectators while live-streaming the action to a global audience.

The Antigua Observer reported that VGambling CEO Grant Johnson had met with Antigua’s Prime Minister Gaston Browne and toured the property with former owner Tony Velarde. Johnson said the company plans to turn the Grand Princess Casino into “the largest dedicated eSports facility in the world.”

VGambling’s Swiss Interactive Software-powered “real money exchange betting” site won’t be operational until Q4 2016 but Johnson says the company “continue to execute our business plan with the goal of becoming a leader in the eSports wagering sector.”

VGambling currently holds a Client Provider Authorization Permit from the Kahnawake Gaming Commission and has applied for an Interactive Wagering License from the Financial Services Regulatory Commission of Antigua and Barbuda. VGambling says it doesn’t intend to offer eSports wagering to US residents.


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