Time was that esports was only the purview of pro gamers with gifted strategy and keyboard skills, but competitive gaming has exploded in popularity among a broader audience in the past 12 months. This is in no small part due to everyone cooped up at home in front of their phones and computers, as well as the absence of in-person professional tournaments until the pandemic subsides. As a result, companies such as Roblox and Skillz, which enable just about anybody to compete for cash and prizes in popular and easy-to-play puzzle, word, and trivia games, are exploding in popularity and valuation.
In the latest Dealerscope podcast, chief digital editor Jessica Guyon speaks with Matt Schmitt, the CEO of AlphaTech which recently acquired the online esports platform and community GamerzArena. Schmidt, whose background is in film, shares his thoughts on gaming as entertainment and Amazon’s recent entry into the space, as well as why esports are on the rise and what the “casual and emerging gamer” has to do with it.