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Über dieses Buch

The global phenomenon of eSports has experienced exponential growth in recent years, gaining interest from the media, sports and technology industries. Being born digital, global and agile, competitive gaming appeals to a young and emerging audience, and therefore the management of businesses within the eSports industry requires a unique strategy. Presenting a short history of the industry and an overview of its various stakeholders, the author explores how important governing principles have emerged to culminate in a business model network. An insightful read for scholars researching innovation, eBusiness and strategy, this book takes a pioneering approach and examines potential implications for the future of eSports.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

1. Introduction: The Emergence of eSports

Abstract
The world of eSports or competitive gaming has grown exponentially in recent years; however, the industry itself is not as young as many believe. There are many similarities with traditional sports and media businesses, but there are many differences, too, in the eSports industry. With the absence of a standardized governance structure, eSports is predominantly self-organizing and mostly business-driven. Primarily due to the young audience, the global approach, and the digitized environment, the eSports industry does not follow traditional business rules. Consequently, an observation of the history from a business perspective and an in-depth analysis of the strategic management are necessary to categorize the eSports industry.
Tobias M. Scholz

2. A Short History of eSports and Management

Abstract
The phenomenon of eSports is not a recent development, despite popular opinion being that it emerged just in the last years. The roots of competitive gaming in fact date back to the beginning of computers. Since then, eSports has been part of the evolution of computers and first rose to popularity in the arcade era. With the internet, the current iteration of eSports emerged, and the eSports industry experienced several hypes and crises. Still, there was always space for business, and many existing stakeholders appeared in the early 2000s. The recent years, however, have indeed been a time of exponential growth as well as potential business opportunities.
Tobias M. Scholz

3. Stakeholders in the eSports Industry

Abstract
The eSports industry is a multifaceted industry involving many different stakeholders, all of them contributing to the value chain or the value integration of the audience that is experiencing the various eSports products. Notably, the long-term stakeholders in eSports are highly intertwined and interconnected, creating a business around the audience. Based on the long-term relationships, certain essential eSports characteristics emerge that explain parts of the behavior of these primary stakeholders. In recent years, various secondary stakeholders joined this industry with different industry backgrounds. They have introduced new ideas and new concepts, but are trying to find their place in the stakeholder network of eSports. Consequently, defining the primary and secondary stakeholders is necessary.
Tobias M. Scholz

4. Unwritten Governing Principles

Abstract
Based on the long eSports history and the interaction of the stakeholders, it becomes evident that eSports follows certain principles, although they are unwritten, and reviewing the management decisions in the past reveals these principles. These principles are derived and institutionalized over time and show self-governance within eSports. The roots of eSports are influenced by concepts like ‘easy to learn, hard to master’, the shifting metagame, and the game design. The Wild West metaphor is an ongoing motif, but a more in-depth observation highlights its potential influence. The principle of born digital, born global, and born agile explains the uniqueness of eSports, being an industry that is by its nature part of a digitized, global, and agile world.
Tobias M. Scholz

5. The Business Model NetworkBusiness Model Network

Abstract
The eSports industry is highly volatile and in the midst of exponential growth; however, it becomes evident that a common understanding influences the eSports industry. The focus is on a value integration toward the audience and doing business around this audience. Furthermore, there are three existing rules: coopetition, co-destiny, and convergence. These rules imply an increased interconnectedness of stakeholders and result in a tight business model network. However, with the entrance of new organizations, the business model network may experience frictions and this development may in the future lead to changes in the business model network of the eSports industry, eventually changing the prevailing rules of coopetition, co-destiny, and convergence.
Tobias M. Scholz

6. Conclusion: The Future of eSports

Abstract
The eSports industry is a highly complex environment that is continually evolving. Based on this innovativeness, there are groundbreaking changes that disrupt the industry every five years or so. Furthermore, many external stakeholders invest in eSports, creating a potential bubble, due to an overheated market. Such a development may result in a correction or a crisis, but it highlights the importance of creating a business model to monetize the audience. Besides the risk of not having a solid business model, eSports organizations need to govern the risk concerning future developments related to franchising, new markets, new games, and an ongoing fragmentation of the eSports industry. The eSports industry will, despite any events, grow, though the composition of stakeholders may change.
Tobias M. Scholz

Backmatter

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