The awareness about fantasy gaming platforms, is increasing, with more platforms offering easy access to games.
Over the last 15 years, the Indian Premier League (IPL) has emerged as the largest cricket, as well as sports, tournament in the country. It attracts the most number of eyeballs and engagement because of its format and broader appeal across the country.
With the proliferation of the Internet, newer engagement avenues, such as fantasy leagues, are now driving the IPL economy’s growth.
As per market research firm Redseer Strategy Consultants, the gross gaming revenue of fantasy sports during the ongoing IPL, is expected to grow by 30-35% to reach Rs 2,900-3,100 crore in 2023.
Redseer’s latest report reveals that the awareness about fantasy gaming platforms, is rapidly increasing, with more and more platforms offering easy access to games. Many new platforms like CricPe, Gamezy, Howzat, etc., are trying to improve their presence in the market, which will bring in more users.
Redseer estimates that the growth of the market size of the IPL, is a result of several factors, including more awareness of fantasy games and newer platforms increasing their marketing efforts.
Ujjwal Chaudhry, partner, Redseer, says, “The steepest growth in fantasy sports, will come from Tier-II cities, driven by increasing adoption of fantasy platforms and cross-migration of users from other games.”
“The increased Internet accessibility will give a push to the IPL economy. As per our estimates, the average revenue per user is expected to grow from Rs 410 in IPL 2022 to Rs 440 in IPL 2023.”
The expanding digital gaming ecosystem, on account of growing Internet connectivity and affordable feature-equipped smartphones, is primarily driving India’s fantasy sports market.
Why has the IPL been so important for fantasy sports?
"India being a cricket fanatic country, cricket forms 90% plus share of revenue for the fantasy sports platforms. IPL is one of the major cricketing events in the country which runs for 2 months and thus IPL season contributes to 35-40% of annual revenue for the fantasy sports platforms," shares Chaudhry.
Chaudhry explains that the growth in the digital penetration coupled with increase in the IPL viewership is leading to increasing adoption of fantasy sports platforms from users in non-metro cities.
"Supreme court of India has recognised the fantasy sports as 'Games of Skill' and thus differentiated it from betting platforms which are considered as 'Game of Chance'. Owing to 'Games of Skill', these platforms are legal in the country which increase the trustworthiness of the platforms."
For the uninitiated, fantasy cricket is an online game, where the fans can create virtual IPL teams of real cricketers playing during the season. The game requires users to play strategically. They should know the records of each player.
“There has been an increase in the efforts to make platforms more secure and reliable for the users. Measures like RNG certification, secure payment gateways and fraud security, increase user trust in the platforms. The users, subsequently, end up spending higher amounts on gaming,” adds Saurav Kumar Chachan, director, Redseer.