Alberta has the potential to become an esports hub, report says

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Alberta has potential to become esports hub, report says

According to the Alberta Esports Association, there are more than 20,000 esports enthusiasts in the province.

A report on the development of eSports in Alberta concludes that the province has the potential to capitalize on this industry, valued at $1 billion globally. The 110-page document, titled Alberta Esports Strategy, was commissioned by a group of economic and tourism agencies in the province, such as Calgary Economic Development and Explore Edmonton.

Dan St. Pierre, director of strategic communications at Explore Edmonton, says his tourism promotion agency is always trying to come up with new event ideas to attract visitors. Esports would be one avenue to look into, as there are players and supporters. More than 100 community tournaments are already taking place each week in the province.

When we saw the growth of esports, the number of people going to tournaments and championships, we saw an opportunity to increase the number of visitors to our city, he says.

For the Alberta Esports Association, this report offers a roadmap for solidifying this developing industry by focusing the efforts of different organizations, whether x27; they are for profit or not.

The strategy [proposed in the report] is a tool that will enable us to bridge the gap between the grassroots and the burgeoning esports industry, says Ryan Coutts, the association's partnerships specialist.

The strategy presented in the report also mentions that esports can play an important role in the creation and retention of talent. The expansion of esports in the province could modernize education programs and institutions, the report explains.

One ​​of the proposed initiatives is to create esports leagues in post-secondary institutions. In the long term, esports could even improve the innovation sector, say the authors.

It's a passion for people, but it can also be a career, says Madison Côté, who works in artificial intelligence at Edmonton Global, a business development firm.

The report suggests starting between others by developing relationships with esports event promoters and submitting bids to host the biggest events. In 2019, the League of Legends Tournament Finals contributed an estimated $5.5 million to the city of Detroit's economy.

With information from Stephen Cook

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