Yesterday saw the launch of a new Seattle-based eSports betting site Unikrn (Unicorn), allowing spectators to track stats, monitor live games, and bet on their outcomes.
Fans of eSports based in Europe, Australia, and Asia will be able to enjoy all the new site has to offer after they have gone through a verification process to verify their geographical jurisdiction to ensure that gambling is legal in their region. To help the site stay on the up-and-up, Unikrn has commissioned Australian gambling company Tabcorp to “help monitor geographic areas where wagering is offered” as well as dealing with the accounts verification process.
While Unikrn is an American based company, it is illegal for American citizens to place wagers on the site as per United States laws. But CEO Rahul Sood reported to Geekwire that the site is still open to Americans to part take in other aspects of the site that include following statistics, registering for the forums and community prizes, as well as follow the games and the odds making process.
With eSports rising to be one of the largest internationally watched sports in the world, it’s no surprise that betting sites have started to appear. According to Unikrn, an estimated 71.5 million spectators watched eSports in 2013, and UK-based gambling company Pinnacle says that eSports is the 7th largest betting sector, just behind golf and rugby.
Last Sunday also saw another step towards legitimacy, as ESPN 2 broadcast Blizzard’s first Heroes of the Dorm tournament live on American national television.