Esports Entertainment Group (EEG) launched its esports betting platform, VIE.gg, in New Jersey on Tuesday, whyy.org reported. This followed a mandatory five-day “soft play” period during which the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement monitors new platforms to ensure they adhere to state regulations.
Bettors will be able to use the VIE.gg platform to place esports wagers on popular leagues, including:
- Call of Duty
- DOTA 2
- League of Legends
New Jersey Business Magazine reports that additional games, like Overwatch, will also be featured in the future.
“We couldn’t be more pleased to be the first esports-dedicated operator to be granted the right to commence business in New Jersey,” said Grant Johnson, CEO of Esports Entertainment Group.
“On behalf of our entire team, I would like to thank the Division of Gaming Enforcement for their approval of our platform and the trust they have placed in our Company. Global esports betting is estimated to exceed $205 billion by 2027, and we are thrilled to be playing such an important role in this fast-growing market with the launch of our first esports wagering offering in the United States.”
Esports Betting Potential
Esports may seem like an up-and-coming sport. However, it has been decades in the making. In 1980, a national Space Invaders competition drew 10,000 participants. Although it was much smaller, it was fundamentally similar to the esports competitions streamed on Twitch today.
With the rapid expansion of legal gambling, esports betting is a natural extension of the sports betting ecosystem. Many states allow esports betting because esports tournaments have clear rules and winners. It’s easy to tell when a Call of Duty team has defeated another, for example.
A few states don’t accept esports as a legitimate event to bet on. For example, Indiana outlawed esports betting in its sports betting bill. This reaction often comes from concerns about minors in esports tournaments.
But in many legal sports betting markets, esports betting has the potential to become an important part of the business.