HOK and SAP release report on designing the Esports Venue of the Future
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Global design firm HOK and software company SAP have published a new research report exploring the future of e-sports venues. Over 450 million people will view an e-sports event in 2019, making it one of the fastest-growing sectors in the global sports and entertainment industry. “Developing the Esports Arenas of the Future” explores the factors driving this explosive growth, the unique audience and how the e-sports venue of tomorrow will look very different than traditional sports facilities.

Key design features explored in the report include:

  • A non-traditional seating bowl
  • An immersive environment
  • Reimagined geometries and spatial organization
  • More intimacy
  • A blending of technology with the built environment
  • Hospitality-driven experiences

“Purpose-built venues have historically had a significant impact in establishing a sport in a culture and community,” said Nuno Guerreiro, an architect at HOK and co-author of the report. “Because of the length of these events and technological requirements, e-sports have a unique audience seeking more connected, hands-on experiences. Architects and designers have an opportunity to rethink every aspect of the traditional sports and entertainment environment – from a building’s location and form down to the seat,” added Mr Guerreiro. 

Guerreiro collaborated with Carlos de la Barrera, a senior designer at HOK, and Federico Winer, head of EMEA for Entertainment, to author the report.

“The esports industry is growing faster than any other entertainment segment, with forecasted growth of 35 percent year-over-year for the next five years. We see endless opportunities for SAP's technology solutions to influence and impact the experience for the whole value chain, from publishers to organisers to arenas,” said Federico Winer, Head of Entertainment Industries at SAP. “We are in the era of intelligent enterprises and corporations need to transform data into insights, providing optimal experiences for internal and external stakeholders. These proposed solutions for the future of the esports venues showcase the beginning of how advanced technology, paired with creative built environment solutions, can inspire innovation and digital transformation,” added Mr Winer.