Fantasy Sports is pure sports engagement platform says IndiaTech Report
Fantasy Sports as a sector is represented by Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS), a self-regulatory body incepted in 2017.
IndiaTech.Org (TSIA), a non-profit organization focused on building the world’s largest internet commerce ecosystem, today unveiled the findings of its white paper - ‘Online Fantasy Sports: Adding Value to the Indian Sporting Ecosystem’. The paper brings to light the playing pattern of OFS users, the current regulatory landscape, misplaced perceptions plaguing the industry and the positive impact of the industry on Indian sports and the overall economy.
The study finds that 80% of the online fantasy sports (OFS) users prefer participating in the ‘free-to-play’ format and 98% of the 20% who ‘pay-to-play’, have either won or lost less than INR 10,000 net in their lifetime (past 3 to 4 years). This reinforces the fact that fantasy sports are a competitive digital sports engagement platform and clearly not in the nature of addiction. The average ticket size of the participation in the pay-to-play format is usually as low as INR 35/- (typically the cost of a snack). It is explicit that Fantasy sports are unlike all forms of online games that do not need a real-life player to be actually playing a real sports match to decide the outcome for the participant. The very fact that it is dependent on actualities, seasonality and availability of real-time sports matches makes it a non-addictive form of play which sets it distinctly apart from online games that are commonly perceived to be in the nature of gambling and/or betting.
The format of fantasy sports ensures that sports enthusiasts follow the game more keenly and this directly results in increased focus and attention towards sports. This contributes to an increased viewership & higher sports fan engagement that naturally contributes to more qualitative investments, up-gradation and packaging of these sports making them more viable and remunerative to the players of that sport.
Commenting on the need to safeguard the interest of sports enthusiasts in India, Rameesh Kailasam, CEO, IndiaTech said, “In the last few years, fantasy sports has certainly become a potential sector that has performed exceptionally well and boosted the consumption of sports in India. As a legally approved format of sports fan engagement, the industry is self-regulating to protect the users and operators through FIFS. There are multiple perception issues the industry has to overcome to reach its full potential as a non-addictive and skill-based platform.”
Fantasy Sports as a sector is represented by Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS), a self-regulatory body incepted in 2017. FIFS has a defined Charter which outlines a framework within which the industry must function. Self-regulation has so far proven adequate for the industry and the focus shall be towards ensuring that the effectiveness of self-regulation continues with government recognition, as more players add to the ecosystem.
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