Figures & Facts
eSports in 2015 by the numbers Attendance figures, investments and prize money

eSports in 2015 by the numbers: Attendance figures, investments and prize money

Last year, the eSports market experienced a tremendous growth. In addition to the steady increase of the amount of eSports enthusiasts all over the world this growth is reflected by record-breaking viewership numbers, new dimensions of prize money and investments into the millions. Reason enough for us to look back on 2015 and sum up a few of the most interesting numbers.

This article features:

  • eSports events with the highest amount of unique viewers in 2015
  • eSports events with the highest amount of peak concurrent viewers in 2015
  • eSports events with the highest amount of visitors on site in 2015
  • Investments and buyouts in the eSports market in 2015
  • eSports clubs with the highest prize money winnings in 2015
  • eSports players with the highest prize money winnings in 2015
  • Total awarded prize money ordered by eSports game in 2015

eSports events with the highest amount of unique viewers

EventGameUnique viewers 
Worlds 2015League of Legends36,000,000Source
ESL One Cologne 2015 CS:GO27,000,000Source
DreamHack Cluj 2015 CS:GO25,090,864Source
ESL One Katowice 2015 CS:GO8,780,000Source
Gfinity Championship Series 2015 CS:GO8,750,000Source
WoT World Championship 2015 World of Tanks2,600,000Source
ESL Championship (Spring) 2015 multiple 1,055,840Source
Smite World Championship 2015Smite> 1,000,000Source
Red Bull Gaming Ground 2015 Dota2500,000Source
The Main 2015 League of Legends310,000Source

eSports events with the highest amount of peak CCU

EventGamePeak Concurrent Viewers 
Worlds 2015League of Legends14,000,000Source
The International 2015Dota24,606,264*Source
IEM Katowice 2015 League of Legends2,600,000Source
ESL One Cologne 2015 CS:GO1,300,000Source
ESL One Katowice 2015 CS:GO1,012,745Source
ESL One Frankfurt 2015 Dota21,000,000Source
DreamHack Cluj 2015 CS:GO985.052Source
* There is no official data regarding the International 2015 (TI5), but we have received a lot of feedback which criticizes TI5 not being on the list. We have received a source which shows that the final match had at least 4,606,264 viewers at a certain time. Therefore we added it, but we cannot be sure if this is the official amount of peak concurrent viewers.

eSports events with the highest amount of visitors on site in 2015

EventGameVisitors on site 
IEM KatowiceMultiple104,000Source
ESL One Frankfurt 2015 (Commerzbank Arena)Dota230,000Source
LCS Final NA 2015 (Madison Square Garden, NY)League of Legends22,000Source
ESL One Cologne 2015 (LANXESS Arena)CS:GO22,000Source
LCS Final EU 2015 (Hovet Arena, Stockholm)League of Legends20,000Source
The International 2015 (KeyArena, Seattle)Dota2> 17,000*Source
Worlds 2015 Final (Mercedes-Benz Arena, Berlin)League of Legends13,000Source
* There is no official data regarding the International 2015 (TI5), but we have received a lot of feedback which criticizes TI5 not being on the list. Therefore we added it. The tournament lasted six days and took place in the KeyArena in Seattle which has a total seating capacity of over 17,000. Since the final day of the tournament was sold out it is safe to assume that it had more than 17.000 visitors on site, but at this moment we cannot provide any additional and profound data.

Investments and buyouts in the eSports market in 2015

Investor/BuyerCompanyInvestment 
USM HoldingsVirtus.pro$ 100,000,000Source
Modern Times GroupTurtle Entertainment GmbH$ 84,987,000Source
Activision BlizzardMajor League Gaming$ 46,000,000Source
Riot GamesCurse$ 30,000,000Source
Index Ventures and moreSuper Evil Megacorp$ 26,000,000Source
Modern Times GroupDreamHack$ 25,000,000Source
FanDuelAlphaDraft< $ 25,000,000Source
Universal Music Group and moreVulcun$ 12,000,000Source
Binary Capital, Mark Cuban and moreUnikrn$ 10,000,000Source
March Capital Partners and moreDojo Madness$ 2,260,700Source

Clubs with the highest prize money winnings in 2015

ClubPrize money won 
Evil Geniuses$8,958,225Source
CDEC Gaming$3,295,931Source
LGD Gaming$3,226,494Source
Vici Gaming$2,624,702Source
Team Secret$2,231,114Source
Virtus.pro$2,157,685Source
COGnitive Gaming$1,768,958Source
EHOME$1,627,431Source
SK Telecom T1$1,531,484Source
Cloud9$1,469,200Source

Players with the highest prize money winnings in 2015

PlayerGamePrize money won 
Peter Dager (ppd)Dota2$1,730,076Source
Saahil Arora (UNiVeRsE)Dota2$1,730,076Source
Clinton Loomis (Fear)Dota2$1,730,076Source
Sumail Hassan (SumaiL)Dota2$1,730,076Source
Kurtis Ling (Aui_2000)Dota2$1,641,750Source
Sun, Zheng (Agressif)Dota2$651,470Source
Liu, Xinzhou (garder)Dota2$651,470Source
Fu, Bin (Q)Dota2$651,470Source
Chen, Zezhi (Xz)Dota2$644,622Source
Huang, Jiwei (Shiki)Dota2$644,622Source

Total awarded prize money ordered by eSports game in 2015

GameAwarded prize money 
Dota 2$31,015,892Source
League of Legends$7,639,121Source
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive$6,177,015Source
Smite$3,648,508Source
StarCraft II$2,806,310Source
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare$2,471,347Source
Heroes of the Storm$2,410,690Source
Hearthstone: Heroes of WarCraft$2,355,140Source
Heroes of Newerth$755,546Source
Ultra Street Fighter IV$559,346Source

// Image source: eslgaming.com / Photograph: Patrick Strack

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10 Comments


  1. mplsvbhvr

    January 11, 2016 at 2:36 pm

    Great article – anyone know why there’s no official data on TI5?

    Reply

    • Christian Kresse

      Christian Kresse

      January 11, 2016 at 3:45 pm

      I tried to contact VALVE but didn’t get a response. As far as I know VALVE didn’t announce why there is no official data. They maintain silence on that topic.

      Reply

      • mplsvbhvr

        January 12, 2016 at 1:46 pm

        Numbers will be released with HL:3 I’m sure… /s

        Reply

  2. […] The growth of eSports is reflected by record-breaking viewership numbers, new dimensions of prize money and investments into the millions.  […]

    Reply

  3. Jabron

    January 12, 2016 at 9:58 am

    Do you have information like this for years past? Like 2013 2014 etc?

    Reply

  4. […] ESports in 2015 by the numbers: Attendance figures, investments and prize money. Available at: http://esports-marketing-blog.com/esports-in-2015-attendance-figures-investments-prize-money/#.Vzw69&#8230; (Accessed: 18 May 2016).In-line Citation:(Kresse, […]

    Reply

  5. john

    June 27, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Great article, I am very interested to see the direction in which eSports will evolve. We have already seen scholarships being offered for league of legends pro players and had league of legends dominate as the biggest in the industry for several years now but it looks like CS:GO might be giving it a run for its money.

    Reply

  6. […] Here’s a fun look at the year in esports by the numbers. […]

    Reply

  7. […] A report by eSports Marketing showed that LoL Worlds 2015 tallied more than 36 million unique viewers, while The International 2015 peaked at more than 4.6 million concurrent viewers. […]

    Reply

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This blog is published by the ENPE Media GmbH, a German marketing and event agency located in Cologne, which focuses on conception, realization and supervision of events and marketing campaigns in eSports.

On this blog we cover marketing-relevant content within the eSports market. Additionally we introduce newcomers to the potentials, structures, risks and features of the eSports market.

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