Forget Netflix - The Next Streaming War Is On
While the television and movie streaming wars enter a new phase with a fight over subscription dollars, a whole new type of streaming war is firing up that will dwarf what we've seen so far.
Investors made a fortune off of the first one. Netflix IPO investors have pulled in up to 37,000%. Buying at lows in the early 2000s could push that figure to over 70,000%.
Even someone who bought Netflix shares at the start of 2018 has doubled their money.
The rest of the competition is going strong but harder to track with regard to how investors value them. Amazon, Apple, and Disney all have colossal businesses outside of streaming services, and Hulu is doing fine with its core partnership of traditional broadcast corporations but it isn't something you can invest in.
There is still plenty of money to be made as these services jockey for market share and subscriber revenue, but the early gains are most certainly gone.
That isn't so for a market that is opening up right now. One that already has more than double Netflix's 183 million subscribers.
eSports are one of the next big things in entertainment. They have been growing for years and are hitting levels that more “traditional” streaming companies would kill for.
First up is the base. There are already 443 million people regularly watching eSports around the world.
That is expected to grow to over 650 million in just two years. That's an entire new Netflix subscriber base added by 2022.
It isn't just a broad and diffused market either. Over 200 million people tuned in to watch just one event.
That's nearly double the 111 million that watched the last Super Bowl.
Last year, viewers watched over 6.6 billion hours, up from over 1 billion hours in 2012, marking a sixfold increase.
We're seeing growth that blows anything else internet-related out of the water, including the “Internet of Things,” streaming services, and smartphones.
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If the 2010s were all about streaming television and movie programs, the 2020s will be all about eSports.
It's a bit hard to peg down but most analysts put eSports at a total worth of about $1 billion today. Video games are worth about $150 billion yearly.
And with viewership already eclipsing the NFL, which is worth about $81 billion per year, you can start to see the potential.
We certainly know tech companies are. They're investing in hardware and paying huge premiums to hire anyone and everyone who can boost their market share.
Job postings on Indeed, now one of the biggest job seeker/headhunter companies out there, for eSports rose 43% during the first three months of 2020.
That is on top of strong growth for years prior. A former economist at Indeed, Andrew Flowers, saw the share of job postings for roles related to eSports rise 343% between December 2015 and December 2019.
Everyone from low-level IT workers to marketers is being offered six-figure salaries, and software engineers are starting at or above $160,000.
Viewership is soaring. Sponsorships and advertising revenue are soaring. Corporate investments in labor and infrastructure are soaring.
Everyone is on board and the new streaming market is firing on all cylinders. Now is the time to get in early.
It's like Netflix in 2002 all over again. Except so much bigger.
Adam's editorial talents and analysis drew the attention of senior editors at Outsider Club, which he joined in mid-2012. While he has acquired years of hands-on experience in the editorial room by working side by side with ex-brokers, options floor traders, and financial advisors, he is acutely aware of the challenges faced by retail investors after starting at the ground floor in the financial publishing field. For more on Adam, check out his editor's page.
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