E-Sports in Brazil: Millionaire Market set for Regulation
By Space Coast Daily // June 20, 2022
According to Newzsoo, the Brazilian e-sports and fantasy games market is estimated to be worth US$ 200 billion by 2023. This forecast increase is due in part to the possibility of the market’s regulation, an issue which has been a major subject of debate in Brazilian public relations.
The initiative has been tabled by the Secretariat of Evaluation, Planning, Energy and Lottery (Secap) of the Ministry of Economy. At the end of last year, the Chamber of Deputies initially included fantasy games in a project that also dealt with gambling. However, the decree is currently being processed by the Civil House.
The possibility has excited fans of e-games, such as the popular League of Legends and Counter Strike, as well as fantasy games, in which players compete based on the performance of lifelong athletes, such as Cartola FC and Rei do Pitaco.
A million dollar market which could reach up to US$ 200 billion in 2023
The consumption of digital games increased significantly during the pandemic, and nowhere was this more true than in Brazil: according to the GameBrazil 2021 Survey, around 75,8% of Brazilians claim to have played more often during the extended period of social isolation. This indicator lends weight to Newszoo’s 2023 turnover estimate.
Each year, several championships promote million-dollar prizes for their winners, as well as recognition among the members of the streaming community. In 2019 the Brazilian League of Legends Championship – the most popular league in the country – set an audience record with 316,000 simultaneous views on platforms such as Twitch and YouTube.
To get an idea of its popularity, the e-sports sector in Brazil is estimated to boast the third largest fandom in the world, behind China and the United States.
Specialists highlight the relevance of regulation in Brazil
Beyond the monetary aspect of digital games, another factor should be considered: the Law Project 383/2017. According to Nicholas Bocchi, a lawyer specialized in sports and e-sports law, the regulation “determines which legislation is applicable in the relationships that take place within electronic sports activities”.
Currently, the relationship between clubs and athletes is one of employment (CLL). However, as Bocchi says, “sports legislation provides for a differentiated employment contract, the ‘Special Sports Work Contract‘”, which is already being put into practice by League of Legends clubs and athletes.
In short, the regularization of the e-sports market offers a form of protection, since it guarantees legal support to its players. “If a dispute reaches the judiciary, the application of one legislation or another will depend solely on the judge’s interpretation of e-sports being a sport, or just a game“, notes the lawyer.
E-sports in Brazil: more women are joining in
A 2021 GameBrazil survey shows that women make up 62,2% of total smartphone players, while men account for 61,9% of console players. Women represent 51,5% of all Brazilian players.
More women taking part means more representation, as seen with the creation of new girls’ teams and women’s leagues. The GRRRLS League, the first women’s CS:GO league in the world, is a prime example. Also notable is the hiring of Roberta Coelho, former head of new business at Rock In Rio, as CEO at MIBR.
While the matter of regulation is still being discussed by the Senate, e-sports are already a reality in Brazil. For all genders!