LeoVegas explores a new vertical with today’s roll-out of its brand-new eSports betting website, pixel.bet, in Sweden
LeoVegas is venturing into the lucrative eSports betting market with today’s launch of the newest brand in its online gambling portfolio – pixel.bet.
First news about LeoVegas’ interest to expand its reach into the eSports betting market emerged last fall when the online gambling operator acquired a majority stake in pixel.bet’s parent company, Pixel Holding Group Ltd. The transaction was finalized later in 2018 and LeoVegas paid €1.5 million for the eSports betting operation.
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Commenting on pixel.bet’s entry into the newly liberalized Swedish gambling market, Pixel digital Ltd. CEO Eirik Kristiansen said in a press release published today that being licensed in Sweden represents a springboard that will also position the business for continued international expansion.
Aside from betting on eSports, pixel.bet will also be offering casino games and live casino. Sweden and the Nordics are the newly launched operation’s initial focus market, but owners believe it has the potential to grow further internationally.
LeoVegas CEO Gustaf Hagman said today that in a year when his company focuses “on strong growth but also on cost efficiency, it is inspiring to see that pixel.bet are developing well.”
eSports Is Massive in Sweden
Sweden has long been one of the super powers in eSports. According to a 2016 report commissioned by Unibet, the Nordic nation has more eSport players than any other country in the world. Sweden not only has the highest concentration of professional players, but they are also among the ones most eager to spend big on eSports.
The nation has one of the largest and most dedicated eSports audiences, with millions of Swedes watching competitive gaming and purchasing tickets and merchandise. According to an early 2018 survey compiled by PayPal and research firm Superdata, Sweden is Europe’s second biggest eSports consumption market, beaten only by Russia. The study was based on viewership data from Twitch and YouTube.
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Sweden’s market volume stood at SEK254 million (approx. $27.2 million) at the time the PayPal report was released. Market volume is calculated on consumer purchase of tickets and eSports-related merchandise. It is believed that the Swedish eSports market will reach its peak this year and is expected to grow 14%, two times the growth rate of the global market, and to be worth around SEK350 million (approx. $37.6 million).
The reason why eSpots has turned into a booming business in Sweden has a lot to the with the fact that the country has a strong competitive gaming culture and has created an excellent environment for players to develop their skills and gain experience. The fact that the nation was among the earliest adopters of fast broadband further helped it grow into the eSports super power it is today.
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With the widespread growth of competitive gaming, betting on eSports competitions has become an equally attractive activity. The re-regulation of the Swedish gaming market has paved the way for gambling operators to venture into the relatively new but already lucrative field of eSports betting and capitalize on its increasing popularity.
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