The world championship for Dota 2 esports game, referred to as The International (TI 12), hosted by Valve Corporation, provided an unexpected benefit to the host venue, Climate Pledge Arena. This came in the form of food and beverage sales surpassing those made during traditional sports events.
The three-day championship led to an unexpected surge in sales at the concession stands. According to Matt Loerke, Delaware North’s assistant general manager at Climate Pledge Arena, food sales during the event surged by almost 40% compared to usual sports events and a 7% increase in non-alcoholic beverage sales. “Our chef-driven menus have consistently been a hit and we were successful in delivering high-quality food to the spectators, many of whom stayed at the arena for multiple meals,” he said to SBJ.
This upswing shows promise for the esports sector, which has been experiencing a decline in scope and size due to various factors, including global economic challenges. Among the major esports competitions, TI 12 is grouped with the League of Legends World Championship (currently underway), Counter-Strike 2 Majors, and the Valorant & Call of Duty world championships. This also seems to bode well for traditional sports venues.
“The International, one of the most prominent esports championships globally, was a first for our team at Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena. It underlined the significance of understanding our customers’ preferences. We expected a sales increase based on prior experiences at other venues but were amazed by the unique audience’s engagement,” added Loerke.
Read the upcoming Thursday’s SBJ Esports newsletter for an in-depth examination of The International.