Esports Technologies (NASDAQ:EBET) is looking to bring esports wagering to a wider audience, filing a comprehensive provisional patent that would allow for betting on gaming competitions from streaming entertainment platforms.
The Las Vegas-based operator of an online gaming platform filed a patent application for its existing technology that improves “the betting experience for sports and esports live streaming events.”
The provisional patent filing covers a proprietary technology that integrates sports and esports wagering across many of the world’s most popular live streaming platforms, including Twitch, YouTube, Amazon TV & Gaming, Facebook Gaming, and Hulu, among others,” according to a statement issued by the company.
News of the filing sent Esports Technologies shares higher earlier on Wednesday. But the stock has subsequently given up those gains and is trading lower by one percent at this writing. The company went public in April, with the stock quickly developing a reputation for volatility.
Esports Technologies: Another Esports Betting Contender
Today, esports betting in the US represents a scant percentage of overall handle and revenue in regulated betting markets. Wagering on it is legal in far fewer states than traditional sports.
That’s not preventing operators and other companies from preparing for what they view as a new, likely lucrative betting frontier. For example, Sony Interactive Entertainment recently filed a patent application that would permit PlayStation users to bet on esports competitions and place those wagers in bitcoin.
For companies such as Esports Technologies and Sony, the synergies between streaming — one of the platforms on which esports is most consumed — and wagering are obvious. The marriage potentially taps into something gaming companies crave: Access to a younger, tech-savvy pool of would-be bettors. Importantly, data supports the notion that streaming is stealing share from linear television.
“Live streaming has seen explosive growth – rising from 1.97 trillion hours watched in 2019 to 3.93 trillion in 2020. Live streamed gaming content was also on the rise, with fans watching more than 27 billion hours of esports across Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming in 2020,” according to Esports Technologies.
Esports Betting Is Growth Frontier
On a global basis, esports betting drove $343 million in net revenue for sportsbooks last year, and that figure is forecast to jump to $862 million in 2024.
For its part, Esports Technologies, which can accept bets in nearly 150 jurisdictions, takes wagers on Counter-Strike: GO, League of Legends, Dota 2, StarCraft 2, Rocket League, Rainbow Six, Warcraft 3, King of Glory and FIFA — all video games.
The operator also accepts wagers on traditional sports and leagues, including the NFL, NBA, Major League Baseball, soccer, and more.
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