Tot­ten­ham to cash in on video games

New Straits Times - - Sport -

LON­DON: Tot­ten­ham are hop­ing to earn up to £3 mil­lion (RM17 mil­lion) per event at their new sta­dium by 2019 sim­ply from stag­ing video game tour­na­ments.

Spurs’ ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Donna-Maria Cullen has con­firmed that the club want to bring a wide range of non- foot­ball ac­tion to their new £800 mil­lion home, in­clud­ing lu­cra­tive ma­jor eS­ports events.

The sta­dium, due to open next year or by 2019-20 at the lat­est, will in­clude a re­tractable pitch to al­low NFL games and con­certs, and the club want the new White Hart Lane to be­come a go-to venue for eS­ports as the craze takes off in the UK.

eS­ports are video games played by pro­fes­sion­als. Big events reg­u­larly at­tract crowds of 50,000-plus in the US, Ger­many, Poland and across Asia.

Tick­ets for ma­jor tour­na­ments in the US typ­i­cally sell for be­tween £20-£100 a head.

Tot­ten­ham’s new sta­dium will be able to hold 60,000 fans for non-sport­ing events, in­clud­ing a VIP ca­pac­ity of 8,000.

Spurs could re­al­is­ti­cally gen­er­ate up to £2.5 mil­lion from ticket sales per event, with 50,000 ‘nor­mal’ tick­ets at up to £30 and the bal­ance sold as high-priced cor­po­rate seats. Tot­ten­ham could also gen­er­ate be­tween £500,000-£1 mil­lion per event from spon­sor­ship deals, cater­ing and mer­chan­dise sales, plus ad­di­tional com­mer­cial spin-offs.

“The foot­ball sta­dium will be avail­able to watch eS­ports, which reg­u­larly at­tract crowds of 5060,000 spec­ta­tors in Korea and the US, and could prove to be another op­por­tu­nity to mon­e­tise the struc­ture,” Cullen told a sports busi­ness con­fer­ence last week.

Manch­ester City and West Ham are among the Premier League foot­ball teams that al­ready have eS­ports play­ers on their books — peo­ple who rep­re­sent the club at eS­ports events, play­ing video games.

An in­creas­ing num­ber of sports teams from Euro­pean foot­ball leagues in the Netherlands (Ajax and PSV) and Ger­many (Schalke) to NBA bas­ket­ball teams in the USA (Philadel­phia 76ers) have eS­ports teams, hop­ing to reach the hun­dreds of mil­lions of fa­nat­i­cal video game play­ers in the world and at­tract them to fol­low ‘real’ sport. Daily Mail

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