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Niko Companions predicts that video games income in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt (MENA-3) will develop 56% from $1.8 billion in 2022 to $2.8 billion in 2026. This represents a CAGR of practically 10% — indicating a serious development alternative for the area. This forecast is a part of the video games market analysis agency’s second annual MENA-3 Video games Market Report & 5-12 months Forecast.

MENA-3 development

Along with this income development, the agency estimates the variety of avid gamers will even develop practically 30%, from 67.4 million final yr to 87.3 million by 2026. This interprets to a CAGR of about 6%, which signifies that customers will not be rising practically as quick as spending. Because of this, the agency predicts that common consumer spending will enhance over the following 5 years.

Niko Companions factors to 3 drivers of this income development: cell gaming, private and non-private sector investments and esports.

Cellular is the biggest platform by income and gamers in MENA-3. Accessibility is a key issue — there’s a wholesome marketplace for consoles and PCs, however cell is projected to develop by double digit CAGR over the following 5 years.


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Investments in gaming and esports have made headlines just lately. Particularly, Saudi Arabia’s Public Funding Fund (PIF) and its subsidiary Savvy Video games Group made a number of excessive profile investments. This features a $38 billion plan to make Saudi Arabia a worldwide hub for gaming.

Esports in MENA-3

Esports serve to drive journey and tourism to the nation and strengthen the nation’s place within the video games market. Savvy acquired prime occasion organizers ESL Gaming and FACEIT for a complete of $1.5 billion final yr and the flagship Gamers8 competition will return in July 2023. Moreover, rival organizer BLAST has partnered with Abu Dhabi Gaming to host occasions within the UAE.

Niko Companions expects that by 2026, MENA-3 might be competing with hubs like Singapore and China.

The agency’s knowledge additionally helps this funding technique into esports. 73% of avid gamers in MENA-3 interact with esports in some capability. This consists of reminiscent of watching esports content material, enjoying esports-focused titles or competing in beginner or skilled tournaments. This exhibits broad attraction for aggressive gaming within the area.

Extra particularly, about two in 5 avid gamers throughout the MENA-3 area watch esports content material (41.7%) or play esports titles (40.7%). An extra 12.4% have competed in beginner or professional esports tournaments themselves. Additional funding and high-profile occasions may incentivize extra engagement with esports — a wanted development phase for the business.

Regional Variations and Demographics

MENA-3’s viewers can also be driving its development potential. Whereas gaming continues to skew closely male within the MENA-3 area — 67.4% of avid gamers in MENA-3 are male vs. 53.7% of the inhabitants — the viewers is younger on common.

76% of avid gamers within the MENA-3 area are below the age of 35. Egypt particularly stands out, having a considerably increased share of avid gamers below 25 years previous in comparison with Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Moreover, Egypt has the biggest inhabitants of avid gamers and is the quickest rising market within the MENA-3

As compared, Saudi Arabia is the biggest market by video games income and is taken into account the gaming powerhouse of the area in keeping with Niko Companions. After all, that is partially fueled by the PIF’s investments. In the meantime the UAE has the very best ARPU of the three markets.

These outcomes are primarily based on a survey of 1,126 avid gamers within the area alongside interviews of business professionals from the area. Niko Companions full 100-plus web page report on the MENA-3 area is accessible now.

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