No matter what happens from here on out, Esports Entertainment Group will be able to say they were first. The company’s VIE.gg platform only offers odds on esports betting events.
Earlier this month, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement approved the operator for full launch. Vie.gg had been in soft play or testing mode since January.
For those thinking this is another NJ sports betting app, it’s not. Don’t bother checking for the Raptors vs. Sixers point spread as it’s not there.
Odds for League of Legends, Call of Duty and DOTA 2, on the other hand, are available.
While the testing period might be finished, a new test is now officially underway. It’s time to find out if legal esports betting will attract New Jersey bettors.
Esports Entertainment Group setting the NJ esports betting table
The reality is, at least here in North America, wagering on esports isn’t in the same league as NFL and March Madness betting. NFL betting was the driving force behind breaking $1 billion in monthly handle.
Will NJ bettors be willing to risk say $25 on JD Gaming (-110) to win the League of Legends spring playoffs?
Or maybe Royal Never Give Up (-125) is the right side?
Prior to the Vie.gg platform launch, other NJ sports betting operators were offering esports odds on a case-by-case basis when the DGE approved events.
At the same time, no other product like this exists in North America, Canada included. So Esports Entertainment Group being live in its first American market is a pretty big accomplishment.
“We are pleased with the completion of the soft play period, which is a testament to all the hard work by our team over the past year,” said Grant Johnson, CEO of Esports Entertainment Group. “As the first licensed esports-focused betting site in North America, we’re thrilled to fully launch the VIE.gg platform in New Jersey, one of the largest and most promising jurisdictions for sports wagering in the country.”
Whether or not other jurisdictions follow New Jersey’s lead is TBD.
How Vie.gg platform reached this point
New Jersey is a market where there is flexibility regarding what events are available to gamblers.
Besides esports, the Garden State was the first to take legal bets on the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. Yes, there is such a thing as over/under odds on the number of hot dogs consumed.
However, esports events take place throughout the year versus one day. When the Vie.gg soft launch phase began in late January, Johnson said global esports betting is “estimated to exceed $205 billion by 2027.”
“We are thrilled to be playing such an important role in this fast-growing market with the launch of our first esports wagering offering in the United States,” said Johnson.
Like with DraftKings Sportsbook or BetMGM, bettors will find a full menu of events. The odds are similar to what one would see when looking at a moneyline or picking the winner straight up.
However, the Vie.gg platform is definitely targeting an esports audience with these words:
“Here at VIE we are obsessed with esports – just like you. That’s why we made a one-of-a-kind esports betting platform that was created with gamers in mind.”
EEG has a land-based partnership with Bally’s Atlantic City.
Time will tell if that “obsessed with esports” crowd goes all in with this Vie.gg offering.