Singapore will host the first Olympic Esports Week to be held next June, which will feature a hybrid physical and simulated sports.
To be held over four days from June 22 to 25 next year, the inaugural Olympic Esports Week marked a significant step towards the development of virtual sports within the Olympic ecosystem, said the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in a statement Wednesday. The esports event also would deepen engagement with competitive gamers.
Held in partnership with Singapore’s Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, Sport Singapore, and Singapore National Olympic Committee, the 2023 Olympic Esports Week would showcase the latest technologies, panel discussions, education sessions, and show matches on virtual sports.
The four-day event also would feature the first in-person live finals of the Olympic Esports Series, a global virtual and simulated sports competition that last year drew more 250,000 participants from across 100 countries. The competitors took part in virtual and simulated sports competitions, including baseball, motorsport, cycling, rowing, and sailing.
The IOC said more details regarding Olympic Esports Week would be released in early-2023.
The global esports market was worth $1.22 billion last year and projected to hit $1.44 billion this year, according to Fortune Business Insights. The industry is expected to further expand at a compound average growth rate of 21% to reach $5.48 billion by 2029, fuelled by live streaming events and revenue opportunities. These would major industry investments, engagement activities, growing viewership, and league tournament infrastructure.
Growing advertisements of esports on online platforms also would drive market growth, noted Fortune Business Insights.
Esports also were scheduled to make their debut at the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, but the regional competition was postponed to September next year due to the COVID-2019 pandemic.
According to the Olympic Council of Asia, a total of 24 medals would be awarded in eight esports categories at the Asian Games, including Dota 2, League of Legends, and Street Fighter V.