'Collaboration and sponsorship are the keys to success in e-sports'
On Day 2 of the e4m Game On: Gaming Summit, panellists discussed how advertisers and e-sports benefit each other
The second day of e4m Game On: Gaming Summit saw an interesting panel discussion that brought together pioneers, leaders and gamers from the e-sport fraternity deliberated on the topic “The New World of E-sports”. The panel was chaired by Pratik Gupta, Co-Founder, Foxymoron & Zoo Media along with other panelists including Anirudh Pandita, Founder, Pocket Aces; Dr. Rushindra Sinha, CEO & Founder, Global Esports; Vineet Sharma, Category Director, Mountain Dew, Pepsico; Amit Doshi, CMO, Lenovo; Ankit V3nom Panth; Redbull Athlete and Sidharth Kedia, CEO, Nodwin Gaming.
Starting the discussion, Gupta shared, “In 2015, the term ‘e-sports’ was added to the Oxford dictionary. This was a milestone for the industry, as it was the first time the term received an official definition from a prestigious dictionary source.”
Making efforts in understanding the current ecosystem of e-sports in the country, Gupta asked his co-panellists about how has e-sports as an industry grown in India and where does it stand today.
Sharma remarked, “Gaming as a passion point has really grown in the past 4-5 years. As a category, we have grown 10X since we started in 2016.”
"As a company, we have always focused on where the consumers are spending their time and how they are solving their boredom. Gamers have grown substantially since last year and people have started appreciating online gaming,” commented Pandita.
He further added, “As phones get better, the internet gets better, people just don't want to be dumb consumers, they want to interact, they want to create."
Sharing his perspective, Kedia said, “In 2019, mobile e-sports saw unprecedented growth in India, commanding a 40% share of the country’s total esports prize money, and boasting viewership."
Moving the conversation forward, the session chair intrigued about the gaming infrastructure in the country.
Doshi said, “The gaming industry is continuously changing, Lenovo completely reimagined the gaming business. " He added, “Mobile phones have proven game changers.”
Resonating on the same fact, Sinha expounded, “During the pandemic, people used PCs for their official purposes but switched to mobile phones for recreational activities including watching movies and playing online games. Gaming has particularly shifted to mobile phones.”
Putting the spotlight on gamers and athletes, Panth asserted that the gaming community has gone through a tremendous amount of changes and has grown many folds. He explained, “Earlier, players were not seen in a very good light but now the scenario has completely changed and this change is for good. Players are getting motivation in terms of lucrative rewards and recognition.”
“Online gaming has now become a legit profession. Representing my country was my biggest motivation. Brands, also showing their support, are embarking on athletes for their reach and engagement,” added Panth.
Moving towards the end of the insightful virtual discussion, Gupta asked the panelists about the future of e-sports in India and why it is necessary for everyone to contribute.
Kedia advised that the gaming platforms have to make it feasible for gamers to adopt gaming as a full-time career option. “Brands need to pose more faith in e-sports ecosystem”, he suggested.
Pandita too embarked his trust on advertisers, stating, “Advertisers are our partners in this industry. Both benefit mutually from each other”.
Sinha concluded by saying, “Collaboration and sponsorships are the keys to success in this industry”.
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