27, May 2024
Indian Esports and the BGMI Conundrum: Breaking Down the Overreliance

In the bustling corridors of Indian esports, almost every brand manager has encountered a familiar scene. They sit across potential sponsors, brimming with enthusiasm and a plethora of innovative ideas. Their proposals span a diverse range of titles, from tactical shooters to fast-paced MOBAs, each tournament’s concept more exciting than the last. Yet, despite the vibrant pitch, the sponsors’ interest inevitably narrows to a singular focus: BGMI (Battlegrounds Mobile India).

For these sponsors, BGMI is the golden ticket, the single biggest title in Indian esports that promises massive viewership and engagement. It’s a name that echoes through the community, dominating discussions, streams, and competitions alike. BGMI’s dominance is not without merit as it consistently hits targets that matter most to stakeholders. The game not only captures massive viewership online but also draws in large crowds for LAN events, creating a buzz that’s hard to replicate. However, this growing dependency on BGMI raises questions about the sustainability and diversity of Indian esports.

Success of BGMI Esports in India: Reason to Celebrate or Cause of Concern?

According to , India’s gaming industry is expected to nearly double in value from INR 16,428 crore in FY 2023 to INR 33,243 crore by FY 2028, with potential job opportunities projected to more than double by 2025. Meanwhile, the esports sector is forecast to grow from a $40 million market in FY 2022 to $140 million by 2027, with the number of esports players in India expected to increase significantly, as per .

India’s esports market was valued at for FY 2023, largely propelled by BGMI. Despite a five-month ban, BGMI dominated as India’s leading esports title, hosting 33 tournaments with a total prize pool of INR 10.41 crores from June to December 2023. In contrast, Valorant held 11 tournaments with the prize pool totaling INR 1.96 crores during the same period.

The data reveals that BGMI’s total prize pool was more than five times Valorant’s in 2023, with three times the number of tournaments.

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