Palm Beach, FL – April 13, 2021 – With the outbreak of COVID-19, home entertainment seems to be the only option for gamers in lockdown while cinemas and theaters continue their’ door-closed’ policy to prevent the disease. A March 2020 survey at the beginning of the pandemic, showed that that video gamers in the United States reported that they spent 45% more time playing video games amid the quarantine than in the previous week… that number has surely grown over the subsequent year of quarantine. Esports is another emerging industry that manages to make more than a billion dollars a year. Now, after the pandemic, it has gained further traction. A recent look at the U.S. Online Gaming Industry by Statista came up with a number of statistics and facts, including: a)Revenue in the Online Games segment is projected to reach US$23,582 Million in 2021; b)Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2021-2025) of 7.36%, resulting in a projected market volume of US$31,328 Million by 2025; c)User penetration will be 14.6% in 2021 and is expected to hit 16.4% by 2025; d)The average revenue per user (ARPU) is expected to amount to US$21.49Million; and e)In global comparison, most revenue will be generated in China (US$5,599Million in 2021). Active tech companies in the markets this week include Versus Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: VS), Caesars Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ: CZR), Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA), Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ: ZNGA), Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI).
The report continued: “The global media and entertainment market has consistently been on the rise. The entire worldwide market is projected to grow… to 2.2 trillion U.S. dollars by 2021. Gaming is an integral and ever-developing segment of this market. The two largest gaming regions, Asia Pacific and North America, are predicted to (continue to) account for 78 percent of global revenues … Online gaming in particular is one of the branches that has evolved over the past decades. It includes social gaming, mobile gaming, as well as free-to-play and pay-to-play massively multiplayer gaming, otherwise known as MMO gaming. The latter two segments combined generated revenues of roughly 19.9 billion U.S. dollars beginning in) in 2016 and, judging by the data volume of global online gaming traffic alone, which is forecast to grow from 126 petabytes in 2016 to 568 petabytes in 2020, it is safe to assume online gaming is here to stay through 2021 and beyond). The number of console gamers is expected to grow to over 57 million by 2020 and the market for PC online games alone is projected to (exceed its 2019 value of 33.6 Billion U.S. dollars).”
Versus Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: VS) BREAKING NEWS: Versus Systems to Allow Prizing in India – Adding One of the World’s Largest Gaming, Entertainment and Media Markets Significantly Expands the Reach of Versus’ Prizing Technology – Versus Systems today announced that it has added new functionality to its patented Dynamic Regulatory Compliance prizing engine to support uses in India, which is one of the largest and fastest growing markets in the world for entertainment and gaming content and mobile phone use. Versus will be partnering with some of its existing content partners to launch in India within the next 60 days.
With a population of nearly 1.4 billion, India is the largest market in the world for film production, the third largest market for mobile phone use, and one of the fastest growing markets in the world for smart phone adoption. Combining one of the world’s largest markets with a massive user base and rapid mobile growth promises to be an excellent opportunity for the Versus prizing platform, as well as the new Versus XEO platform that allows users to win real-world prizes while watching media, sports, games, and live events on TV, PCs or mobile.
According to the advertising technology firm InMobi, 45% of India’s mobile users started playing games on their smartphones during the COVID pandemic and 84% of the committed gamers said that they game for at least an hour in a single sitting. India is among the top five mobile gaming markets in the world, accounting for about 13% of total game sessions globally. According to a recent KPMG’s media and entertainment report, India’s gaming user base crossed 365 million in March 2020. India’s online gaming industry is expected to grow at a CAGR of 40% to $2.8 billion by 2022, up from $1.1 billion in 2019, according to a Deloitte India report published earlier this year.
In addition to filmed entertainment and interactive gaming, India’s sports market is also large and growing. Cricket is the most popular televised sport in India; in 2020, the Indian Premier League was watched by 405 million viewers for a total of 400 billion viewing minutes, a 23% increase over 2019, according to BARC India.
By expanding into India, Versus will leverage its gaming and second-screen expertise to provide unique prizing solutions for brands and content partners looking to engage with this audience across multiple screens and live events.
“India is one of the most attractive markets in the world for so many reasons,” said Matthew Pierce, Versus’ CEO. “Its enormous and relatively young population, highly developed sports and entertainment markets and rapid adoption of smartphones make it an ideal market for content creators and brands that want to add prizing and interactive engagement for their audiences.” Read this and more news for Versus Systems at: https://www.financialnewsmedia.com/news-vs/
In other gaming news:
Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) recently unveiled EA SPORTSPGA TOUR: Road to the Masters as the exclusive home of the historic Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club, one of the most prestigious golf events in the world, with some of the most recognizable traditions in sports. The Masters made its first-ever virtual appearance with EA SPORTS in 2011, and its return to video games has been highly requested by golf fans. Fred Ridley, Chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters Tournament, unveiled the new cover of EA SPORTS PGA TOUR today during his annual press conference before the 2021 Masters Tournament.
“We’re honored to partner with Augusta National, home of the Masters Tournament, to feature the course and its traditions exclusively in EA SPORTS PGA TOUR,” said Cam Weber, EVP and GM, EA SPORTS. “EA SPORTS is committed to growing the love of sports for everyone, and through our partnerships with the PGA TOUR, Augusta National and the other majors, we will bring new and longtime fans closer to the biggest events in golf than ever before.”
Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ: ZNGA), a global leader in interactive entertainment, recently announced that it has acquired Echtra Games, a cross-platform game studio composed of a development team whose core members have previously shaped the world of action role-playing games through their work on genre-defining titles including Diablo, Diablo II, the Torchlightfranchise and more.
The Echtra Games team strengthens Zynga’s cross-platform play future by adding talented developers with extensive cross-platform play experience as well as proprietary cross-platform development tools and technologies that have been built on top of the Unreal Engine. Specifically, the Echtra Games team will be developing a new, yet to be announced RPG for cross-platform play in partnership with Zynga’s NaturalMotion studio.
Caesars Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ: CZR) recently announced the closing of the sale of MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa to Bally’s Corporation. The closing satisfies Caesars’ agreement with the Federal Trade Commission to divest the asset in connection with the Caesars-Eldorado merger, which closed in July 2020.
“I want to thank the Team Members of MontBleu for all of their hard work and dedication throughout the years with the Caesars organization, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Tom Reeg, CEO of Caesars Entertainment, Inc. “We wish all of them continued success under Bally’s ownership.”
Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI) recently announced the promotion of Armin Zerza to the company’s Chief Financial Officer. A deeply experienced global CFO and operations executive, Zerza currently serves as Chief Commercial Officer of Activision Blizzard and Chief Operating Officer of Blizzard Entertainment. He will assume his new role in the Company’s second fiscal quarter, following the retirement of current CFO Dennis Durkin.
Thomas Tippl, Vice Chairman of Activision Blizzard, noted: “I’ve worked with Armin for more than 20 years, going back to our days at The Procter & Gamble Company. I’m supremely confident in his expertise, focus, and ability to drive shareholder value and disciplined financial performance. When I recruited Armin to become CFO of Blizzard six years ago, I expected him to one day become the CFO of the entire company. I look forward to partnering with him as he builds on the exceptional work Dennis and our team have done to build such a strong global finance function.”
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