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TV audiences in India will see more advertising for esports on their TV sets. Not only is a media dark audience warming up to esports tournaments on various TV channels, but celebrity endorsements are also pumping up the enthusiasm. Brands should prepare for a plethora of opportunities ahead.

Today, esports company NODWIN Gaming announced that it has broken viewership records on linear (Star Sports) as well as digital platform Loco and mobile lock-screen platform Glance Live through its collaboration with the Star Sports Network for India’s first-ever televised esports tournament, the Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) Masters Series.

Read more: Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) conducting their first ever Esports Conference 2022

The tournament has introduced the world of esports to an otherwise ‘media dark’ audience while also opening new advertising and branding opportunities for both endemic and non-endemic brands.

The grand finale of the BGMI mega series will take place on July 17 and the winning team will take home a trophy, a prize money of INR 25 lakhs and a brand-new Hyundai car worth INR13 lakhs. With top teams such as GodLike and Team Soul back in the lead, NODWIN is expecting a spike in viewership across all linear and digital platforms.

Akshat Rathee, MD & Co-founder, NODWIN Gaming, said, “NODWIN Gaming and Star Sports 2 took a huge leap of faith by broadcasting the BGMI Master Series on television. Our aim was to expand the esports audience and capitalise on the fact that esports has a huge potential to fulfil the entertainment fix of both gamers and non-gamers on primetime television.

We’re looking forward to bringing Indian esports at par or even higher than other marquee international sports events across platforms

“We’ve been able to achieve all of this and more with the BGMI Master Series, which was further validated by the response of non-esports brands. We started off the tournament with just two partners and now we have seven sponsors on board, which include Swiggy, Hyundai, Spotify, Wings and Gillette.

“The viewership on both linear and digital platforms has been phenomenal and we are excited to see the climax building up for the grand finale. We are naturally delighted and proud to be part of this great moment in time when the history of esports is being written! We’re looking forward to bringing Indian esports at par or even higher than other marquee international sports events across platforms.”

The BGMI Master Series, being broadcast live on primetime every day from June 24 to July 17 on Star Sports 2, clocked 1.2 million impressions on Day 1 and 12.3 million views through the first eight days of broadcast on TV. According to the TV channel data, the Day 1 numbers beat the impressions of globally followed tournaments like the Australian Open 2022 that recorded 10.5 lakh/1 million impressions on Day 1, the French Open Day 1 with 6.5 lakh impressions and the UEFA CL Semi-Finals that saw 4.6 lakh impressions. The impressions on digital platforms Loco and mobile lock screen Glance Live, also reflected a combined exceptional 53.9 million views from June 24 – July 2, 2022.

Event Impressions (000s) Channels
BGMI Masters series 1201 SS2
Australian Open Day 1 1059 Sony Ten 2 and Six
French Open Day 1 652 Sony Ten 2 and Six
UEFA CL Semi-Finals 464 Sony Ten 2, Ten 3 and Ten 4

The BGMI Master Series’ opening day numbers also had a higher AMA (Average Minute Audience) when compared to Non-India Test match Cricket. The esports tournament’s AMA was 20% higher than the first Eng vs NZ test match.

The reach for the opening day of the BGMI Masters series was 290% of the UEFA champions league final between Liverpool and Real Madrid and 80% of the French Open Roland Garros finals featuring Rafael Nadal.

Bollywood star Tiger Shroff continues as ESPL Brand Ambassador for Season 2

Celebrity endorsements are also supporting the industry. Four days ago, Esports Premier League (ESPL) announced its continued association with youth icon and renowned Bollywood actor Tiger Shroff as the face of India’s first-ever franchise-based Esports league for the second consecutive year.

ESPL Director Vishwalok Nath said, “Tiger Shroff played a key role in making ESPL a household name in its first season. His popularity and fan following among the youth and millennial audiences helped us to engage and influence gamers across the country. His star power also helped push Esports to the mainstream.

Tiger Shroff
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“We are delighted to extend our fruitful association with Tiger in the second season. I’m confident that Tiger’s strong connection with the audiences will help us greatly in achieving our aim of revolutionizing the Indian esports ecosystem,”

Bollywood heartthrob, Tiger’s association with ESPL Season 2 is expected to further bolster the positioning of the league. In the last season, Tiger’s video of cheering esports athletes garnered more than a million views on YouTube.

I am happy to be part of this undertaking to grow the esports industry while encouraging the esports players and the gaming community

“I am glad to continue my partnership with India Today Gaming for ESPL Season 2. Esports has seen an explosive growth across the country. ESPL is a great platform for esports athletes to showcase their talent on the national stage. I am happy to be part of this undertaking to grow the esports industry while encouraging the esports players and the gaming community,” said Tiger Shroff,” said Tiger Shroff.

ESPL has already roped Global smartphone brand, TECNO Mobile as Presenting Sponsor and India’s leading streaming platform, LOCO as their exclusive digital broadcast partner for ESPL Season 2.

Read more: India set to take part in first ever Sim Racing World Cup, ESFI announces national qualifiers

TECNO Mobile is promoting TECNO Pova 3 through this league. The newly launched smartphone will give class-apart gaming experience to the users.

The second edition of ESPL kickstarted on June 15 as this year’s league has been engaging gamers from across the country in high-voltage action of BGMI.

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