Cuban decries esports business
Esports team owner and Dallas billionaire Mark Cuban sat down for an interview with Fox Sports 1 this week, and he described owning an esports team as an “awful business.”
“I think a lot of people who bought into teams … had no idea how bad a business it was,” Cuban told FS1’s Kristine Leahy.
Cuban discussed a range of topics, including what it’s like to be name-dropped in songs by artists like French Montana. But his frank comments on the business of owning an esports team stand out, since he owns the NBA 2K League team Mavs Gaming.
Several esports teams have situated themselves in the North Texas area, including Team Envy and Complexity Gaming. They’ve gotten millions in investments from wealthy local investors. However, as the teams have tried to capitalize on what’s predicted to become a $1.7 billion industry worldwide by 2021, there are lingering concerns over whether team revenues match up with the investment hype.
“In aggregate, it’s a good business,” Cuban said. “Is it growing? Yes. But domestically here in the United States, it’s an awful business.”
The realization that massive viewership metrics in other parts of the world might not equate to exceptional growth opportunities in the U.S. could begin to be seen as teams consolidate and adjust valuations, Cuban said.
When asked where the money in esports is right now, Cuban responded: “There’s not. I mean, being in Asia there’s money. Right? If you’re in Korea, there’s tons of money there.”
As for the U.S., however, Cuban says “not so much.”