A few years ago, if you spoke to someone about the video game industry, they would immediately imagine spotty teens arguing over the internet, dorky kids who can’t socialise, and – if you go further back – four player co-op with Goldeneye64.
But things have changed – a lot. The kids have grown up, got jobs – sometimes in the industry – and the world ]has evolved. During lockdown, investment in the gaming industry boomed, as people ordered a PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch or Xbox One to fill the time spent in isolation. Gone are the days where the gaming industry is just for consumers – it’s now big business.
Press F to pay
The gaming industry is worth big bucks now – most notably in the electronic sports (esports) sector. Recent news that David Beckham’s Esports team – Guild Esports – is planning to IPO on the London Stock Exchange to fund its expansion with a goal of £20m and a valuation of £50m, is just one example of how much money this sector is worth.
Established companies are booming, with Razer – the PC gaming peripheral provider – reporting a 25.3% YoY growth. The diversity, and the healthy number of businesses in the market, makes the opportunities for profit in the gaming sector extremely lucrative.
A city of gamers
The changing times have also felt its impact in The City. The evolution of electronic trading and algos has been spearheaded by individuals passionate about coding, design, and technology – something that draws a lot from the gaming industry. The generation that now makes up The City has grown up with an awareness of technology, and an understanding of the benefits that it brings.
The gaming industry has matured a lot, with more ways for the B2B market to engage with this heavily consumer-based industry. Clients of ours such as FXCM, have seen this increased engagement with gaming, and provide options for their customers to invest in Esports- further highlighting the interest in the sector.
Technology like blockchain also has the potential to dramatically affect the market. As more gaming requires online services, the focus on privacy and ownership of data has become increasingly apparent. Many are now looking to the decentralised nature of blockchain to help manage the fairness of the game, allow gamers to have full ownership of their in-game assets, and protect servers from malfunction or technical issues.
Like with many consumer industries, the step to a corporate role is gradual and often slow. However, gaming is already showing huge potential for financial institutions and investors to get involved in this booming market – taking advantage of the success in the sector. It’s something we’re very conscious about as it ensures we’re aware of the changing marketplace and the way it can affect our clients.
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