With 233 million fans and growing, the eSports industry has attracted big companies like Coca-Cola and Razer with its potential for money-making—this year the business of eSports is forecast by Newzoo to surpass $278 million and grow to over $765 million by 2018. And now eSports has caught the attention of the adult entertainment industry, which is also aimed at a similar young male audience.
YouPorn, one of the largest free porn video websites in the world, has spent the past year sponsoring a pair of Dota 2 teams (Play2Win and Broodmama) under the banner of TeamYP, as well as one of the top Super Smash Bros Melee players, Jason “Bizzarro Flame” Yoon. (Ironically, Super Smash Bros Melee is a Wii U game developed by family-friendly Japanese company Nintendo (NTDOY).)
“The interesting thing about eSports as a whole is that the pro leagues are gaining huge ground in popularity, but we’ve found that a lot of the times the industry doesn’t market many of the players/teams on a massive level,” Brad Burns, vice president of YouPorn, says. “Our involvement in eSports is to help turn that around. We have the resources to really help players that align with us get noticed; bring them into the mainstream, and do our part to help bring eSports into the collective consciousness. But make no mistake, we’ve done our research, recruited an excellent group of players, and got into this to compete with some of the best teams in the world.”
In order to make its gaming initiative suitable for gamers of all ages, the company launched a dedicated TeamYP gaming website and doesn’t promote its YouPorn brand or adult entertainment directly to fans. This approach has worked so far, according to Burns, who says that his company hasn’t had any negative reaction from leagues or publishers to date—including Nintendo.
“Our vision is to make TeamYP one of the largest eSports organizations in the world,” Burns says. “We haven’t come close to spending the budget yet.”
Burns is open to all the popular eSports games out there, but he’s focusing on the games with the largest followings like Valve’s Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Riot Games’ League of Legends.
“We believe that our approach to the management of TeamYP with its separation from our core business will allow us to compete within Riot’s rules and regulations,” Burns says.
While consumers can access YouPorn from any Internet-connected device, Burns says a large audience of gamers uses their consoles to watch adult entertainment. A majority of traffic comes from PlayStation users (51%), with another 39% from Xbox gamers, and 10% from Wii consoles. Burns says 91.5% of these gamers are male, and 77% are between the ages of 18-34.
“The success of TeamYP in the eSports industry will undoubtedly bring a lot of mainstream sponsors to this sport, including some adult entertainment companies,” Burns says.
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