JoKeR Explains How Indian Esports Organizations Manage Their Expenses
A lot of esports organizations field rosters in multiple titles and provide them with all the required facilities. However, providing players with facilities and paying salaries is quite costly. Team Insidious' professional Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) player Gourav "JoKeR" Joshi recently explained how Indian esports organizations manage their finances. He revealed the sources of income organizations have and how they leverage brand association with their pool of content creation to make income.
JoKeR explains how esports organization makes money
JoKeR was playing custom BGMI matches in his recent livestream. While waiting for the match organizer to start the match, he was chatting with his audience. During this period, one of his viewers asked him how organizations manage to provide players with all the facilities and pay hefty salaries without a clear source of income. Responding to this, JoKeR stated that every organization has a different financial structure and broadly categorized them into two categories – organizations with a proper business structure and organizations backed by an entity that pays expenses from its pocket. To explain the structure of the former category, he gave the example of S8UL Esports. "I don't know in depth how S8UL Esports work, but I can use it as an example," he said.
He explained that it costs a huge expense to provide bootcamp and other facilities to players as a sponsor, and it is tough to get returns in esports. So for that, organizations acquire brand deals. "The organization's creators get funds from these sources, as well as from their YouTube channels. Furthermore, the content creators also get other brand deals based on the number of subscribers and followers they have on social media," he said. Organizations get commissions from the brand and creators for providing the deals. "The organization uses this commission to fund the other aspects."
The Prize pool of tournaments is distributed among all the finalists, and the winning team usually wins the major chunk of the overall prize pool. Hence, only esports earning is not reliable for esports organizations to stay sustainable. "The earning from esports winnings is very little, and most of the income is earned through brand deals," he added.
S8UL Esports started as a PUBG Mobile organization, but over the years, it has started to focus more on content creation along with esports. Currently, it houses a few of India's top gaming content creators and has an influence on millions of gamers across India. With such wide reach, S8UL Esports is arguably the most prominent Indian esports organization. "Major part of S8UL Esports is focussed on content creation. From what I know, and I might be wrong, there is a possibility that instead of giving a high salary, S8UL Esports provides better deals. Due to this, its players end up earning more," JoKer said. Further elaborating on his statement, JoKeR added, "In this industry, salary is not the only source of income. They provide better deals than the salary the players should get, along with the organization's name."
JoKeR is continuing to stream BGMI on his channel and is currently practicing competitive scrims in anticipation of the game’s return.