AffiliateFEST Session Summary: esports vs sports betting

Perhaps our most popular session at AffiliateFEST was the one that attempted to dissect the phenomenon that is esports. Entitled ‘Esports, Fantasy, Social Betting, Traditional – a look at the future trends’, the panel examined the differences between esports and sports betting, and how this could be interpreted from an affiliate perspective. Read the opinions of the three panelists below.

Fabien Humbert (

What we’ve noticed, and the reason that we came up with the product, is that we felt like the general operator just used to have esports as an additional tab on its sportsbook, which tends to work for a customer that will be browsing around and looking for something different. However, we felt like there was a big demand from the new generation but also from our primary target which is 25-40 – people who are playing video games, maybe grew up with video games, that have a good income and are willing to bet on a dedicated product, because esports is their passion.

With regards to territory, we feel like esports in Europe has great potential, Sweden and the Nordics are really the driving force in the European market. I’m sure you’ll know about the growth of esports markets in the US, in markets like China, and while we are not as sizeable, we are doing a lot of innovation when it comes to the product. We feel the future will all be about live betting but also about how as marketers we can engage the community. Speaking from an affiliate perspective, I would probably want to use the data of esports to build something more than just a link.

Joakim Renman (Scout Gaming)

Speaking on behalf of fantasy and what influenced our business, it’s primarily a new way to reach new audiences. We see very much people that normally don’t bet using the platform, but it’s also working with existing bettors and attracting them for a longer time. With a casino game, people play for like a month or two and then they’re gone, but here over a two year period we see about 20% are still playing, which is fantastic. We’re building a really long-term client, and that’s the main differentiator between esports and betting/casino.

Mikko Miettinen (Consultant)

As Joakim already said, basically there is this social aspect of the game that you are able to follow your team throughout the match. You often prolong the excitement more than you do in a regular wager that you play in a sports betting event. People who like to compete against someone other than the bookie find fantasy sports interesting, and if I look at it from the affiliate perspective, basically this is a rather small product which is growing and the focus on the market can be on the product side. 

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