Stations like FOX and ESPN are looking for any way to fill the gaps of programming that was usually filled with sports. FOX Sports seems to have found that in broadcasting the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Series Invitational. The decision comes after the inaugural event drew 903k viewers on FS1. FOX Sports already owned the media rights (purchased for $8B) to broadcast NASCAR races so this was a clear step to fill the void and offer their viewers something comparable.
NASCAR is one of three motorsport series to host virtual editions of its respective championships. The Supercars Championship and Formula One (read more here) have launched championships in light of the lack of real-world sporting events due to the outbreak of coronavirus. You can watch the F1 race here. Also, McLaren just partnered with Logitech.
Jeff Cohen from Stephens did a great job this week in their report highlighting the sharp drop in CPI’s for free-to-play mobile game studios, this being driven by the pullback in user acquisition spend by the travel, dating, and lifestyle industries. This market change provides two distinct user acquisition strategies for mobile game studios:
1) Increase User Acquisition Spend - gain a larger user base for cheaper, hopefully driving increased revenue
2) Decrease User Acquisition Spend - acquire the same amount of users for less and let the savings flow down to EBITDA
It is not as simple as I laid out above and there are case by case scenarios for particular game studios; however, the question many game studios are exploring is if the significantly lowered CPI’s allows studios to continue to attract whales at the same rate.
Some mobile studios we spoke with this week claimed that the market changes are attracting a lot of new players at low prices that are not necessarily serious/high-value players, therefore, not attracting more “whales”. I will be curious to see how this develops over the coming weeks as the CPI price remains lower over the coming months.
As we continue to see COVID-19’s effects on traditional sports, Nevada regulators have officially approved wagering on esports tournaments on the ESL Pro League. Esports betting has been in the rearview mirror for betting regulators for years, but now it is being prioritized in the wake of no traditional sporting events. The types of betting that will be offered are head to head, winner of each match, and overall season winner.
This will be a great opportunity for Nevada to experiment with esports wagering as more people than ever are watching esports at home. This will be watched closely as traditional gamblers are exposed to a completely new type of sport to bet on.