Pennsylvania lawmakers are calling for the legalization of esports betting

FROM 27 reported that in a letter to his fellow MPs, representatives Ed Neilson suggested that Pennsylvania should embrace the growing esports trend and incorporate it into its existing gambling regulations.

Esports – a booming industry both in Philadelphia and around the world

To get his point across, Representative Ed Neilson highlighted the construction of a multi-million dollar esports arena in Philadelphia that will host various video game events and tournaments. While that project has stalled and since its announcement has been revamped into a smaller and more diverse arena, there’s no denying the esports industry’s rapid growth.

The eSports gaming sector has been growing rapidly worldwide, with a projected CAGR of 21.9% from 2022 to 2030. The growth is largely due to the rising popularity of streaming platforms like Twitch and a 40 percent increase in eSports attributed to sponsorship. The market value of the esports industry was estimated at $2.5 billion in 2022.

There is a surge in esports companies in the local area such as Nerd Street Gamers, Dignitas and Futures First Gaming investing millions in the sector. Gaming startups like Regression Games have raised millions ahead of launch. A former Philadelphia Eagles player even signed with eMLS as a pro.

Gambling industry experts also see the potential of esports

At the Casino Esport Conference in Atlantic City in October, experts discussed the potential of video games for the gaming industry and the profits that can be made by offering esports betting products.

The video game industry has a huge and growing audience, but the gaming industry has yet to capture this market. The conference offered the two industries the opportunity to explore this frontier.

Gaming research leader Newzoo predicts that competitive video game audiences will grow by 8.7% to 532 million players worldwide in 2023, while video games are expected to generate $1.38 billion in global revenue in 2022, with China being the largest contributes.

Nevada e-sports legislation on the way

Rep. Ed Neilson also pointed out that states other than Pennsylvania are already considering legislation on the sport.

One such example is Nevada, which is at the forefront of gambling regulation as the state’s Gaming Control Board has recommended passing changes in the law that allow betting on esports. This recommendation follows an extensive study conducted by Nevada’s Esports Technical Advisory Committee.

Major Nevada casinos, including Luxor’s HyperX Arena and The Venetian, are already preparing to host esports tournaments, and the committee submitted its proposal to the Gaming Control Board in October 2022. As the esports industry grows rapidly, Nevada is trying to stay ahead of the curve and proactively regulate the sector.