Metaverse opportunities — and risks — for sports are unlimited
Why is the digitalization of the sporting world so appealing? The answer — it’s a process driven by more than pure monetization. It’s accessibility and mass participation that is really at the core of this transformation. Imagine a platform where users adopt facial recognition technology to unlock a world in which they are represented by their own unique avatar. They enter a virtual sports arena, stepping onto a court to play alongside their favorite NBA star or sit courtside amongst other virtual fans who, in the physical world, may be hundreds of miles away.
This is just a taste of the so-called metaverse, referring to a space where the physical and digital worlds come together, and digital representations of people — avatars — interact. Given the ongoing boom in the global esports sector, a market valued at $1.08 billion in 2021 and forecast to grow to as much as $1.62 billion in 2024, we believe a similar pattern is taking shape on an even wider scale in the sports industry with the advent of the metaverse. This holds exciting opportunities, as well as risks, in the sphere of M&A and investment.