SEOUL, Jan. 11 (Korea Bizwire) — The value of South Korea’s e-sports industry increased 4.2 percent on-year to 97.3 billion won (US$87 million) in 2017, a government report said Friday.
The market size of the nation’s e-sports, which refers to competitive video gaming, has steadily expanded in recent years, increasing from 60.27 billion won in 2014 to 72.29 billion won in 2015 and 93.34 billion won in 2016, according to the report jointly issued by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Korea Creative Content Agency.
With the rapid growth, the portion of South Korea in the global e-sports industry has risen to 13.1 percent, global e-sports research agency Newzoo estimates.
By segment, the nation’s e-sports broadcasting generated a revenue of 45.28 billion won, followed by budgets of gaming teams (20.6 billion won), streaming (20.53 billion won) and competition prizes (6.89 billion won).
The average annual salary of a domestic professional gamer was 175.6 million won in 2018, up more than 80 percent from 97.7 million won in the previous year.
The surge in salary was attributed to the attraction of foreign investments into domestic gaming teams and stronger scouting competition for gamers among local teams.
At present, 11 kinds of games are selected as official e-sports events, including three special sports events and eight general sport events.
Local spectators watched an average of 9.6 e-sports games a year, with “League of Legends” accounting for 66.7 percent of the viewership.