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300k+ tune in to record-breaking UK esports event

More than 306,000 people tuned in to the UK’s largest esports tournament, ESL One Birmingham, which was held at Arena Birmingham from 31 May to 2 June, according to arena operator NEC Group.

The tournament surpassed the highest-ever viewership for an Dota 2 ESL One event.

As ESL One (a tournament organised by Electronic Sports League) returned to the UK for the second time, Arena Birmingham opened its doors to over 24,000 Dota 2 fans from across the world. The tournament was watched for more than 7.6 million hours online over the course of the weekend, and saw nearly 8m video views and just over 6m impressions on social media.

Team Secret, who now hold four ESL One titles, were victorious, and claimed their share of the US$300,000 prize pool.

The UK’s digital minister, Margot James MP, attended the event and met with players, teams and production crew.

Ian Congdon, head of venue sales at Arena Birmingham, comments: “We are thrilled to have hosted such a prestigious international event for the second year running.

“I am very excited about what the future brings for the UK esports scene”

“Arena Birmingham is one of the busiest and best equipped large-scale indoor venues in Europe, so it’s the ideal place to hold an event of this type which welcomes the most passionate of esports fans from across the globe.”

“Birmingham did it again for the second year running,” adds James Dean, CEO of ESL UK. “The crowd was electric, memes were rife, the dotes [Dota fans] were incredible and yet again records were set. It’s safe to say ESL One has found a true home in Birmingham.

“It was an honour to welcome Margot James to the event, [and] a very exciting demonstration to the entire UK esports industry of support and enthusiasm from [the British] government. I am very excited about what the future brings for the UK esports scene.”

Electronic Sports League (ESL), the world’s largest esports promoter, has strategic partnerships with several major music industry players, inckuding AEG, Vivendi/UMG and Australia’s TEG.

The esports (competitive videogaming) market is set to reach US$1 billion in value in 2020.


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