Smile Expo

Development and prospects of eSports in Russia

Publication date: 07 nov 2016

Development and prospects of eSports in Russia

eSports as a phenomenon  has been existing for more than 10 years. It may sound unbelievable, as it has become widely popular only recently. Particularly, it happened when media began to discuss million-worth prize pools of cyber sports tournaments won by some players.

The international eSports movement started in the late 90s, and that has left its mark on the pace and quality of its development for years to come. However, the Russian and the global eSports were quite similar in its origin. Only South Korea went for its development as a professional discipline from the very beginning. In other countries, the video games fans were the ones who had to take care of the amateur tournaments arrangement, building teams, etc. 

We offer you a video where the famous personalities of the industry talk about the origins of the movement. This is a part of the documentary prepared jointly by Natus Vincere team and SteelSeries.

Ever since the competitive spirit among players in so-called computer clubs in the post-Soviet space began to emerge, the local cyber sport has faced many ups and downs.

When the World Cyber Games sponsored by Samsung were held in Seoul in 2001, Russian participants won two gold medals and their achievements were highlighted on TV. After viewing the material on the NTV channel, which was repeated many times afterwards, many young people got seriously interested in eSports movement and considered it promising for their future.

Then, series of tournaments sponsored by Asus kicked off in Russia and were followed by other cyber sport competitions of different scale. This, in its turn, has led to the emergence of semiprofessional and professional teams. The appearance of the European Electronic Sports League and spectacular American competitions also contributed to the development of industry in the Russian Federation.

In 2004, eSports have been included in the official register of Sports of the Russian Federation, but in 2006, it was expelled from the list. For a long time our gamers have been very assertive in the world due to their big victories, but did not have the opportunity to become a full-fledged part of the developed local industry. The main sources of capitalization for the teams, in addition to the tournaments prize money, were YouTube and Twitch channels and generous donations from the fans as well.

In 2016, when the cyber sport in Russia was recognized at official level, the situation on the market has changed. The international exhibition organizing company Smile-Expo follows the global trends and promotes their introduction to the local market. Since the global and large local business is increasingly penetrating into cyber sports industry, and the understanding of cyber sport capitalization in Russia is only beginning to emerge, we have decided to contribute to the development of the industry.

The industry conference eSPORTconf Russia 2016 will be held in Moscow on December 1. This is an effective platform for the meeting of foreign and local experts that represent various segments of the industry and have a direct impact on its development.

This is the place where we will review the prospects of eSports, current trends of this business, strategy of its development in Russia and the possibility of entering the international arena. More details about the program, speakers and partners can be found on the official website of the conference.

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