A new report was recently released by The Boyd Company that provided a list of the top 25 places in the United States and Canada for the esports software industry. Based on this research, Minden, Nevada was named the top location in the U.S. since it is positioned to attract many tech companies that will soon be forced to leave California.
Minden is located within minutes of scenic Lake Tahoe and its many attractions. The area is a popular landing spot for fleeing Silicon Valley tech and digital media companies like Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Panasonic, and Tesla. Reno’s Atlantis Casino has a dedicated esports lounge and the University of Nevada/Reno is home to a highly ranked I.T. Department and a competitive esports team.
The consultancy firm analyzed the annual operating costs for esports companies, including labor, real estate, power, taxes, and so on. Of the 25 cities that made the list, Minden, Nevada had the lowest annual operating costs among all U.S. cities at $17.86 million.
Overall, Canadian sites had the lowest operating costs of all cities mentioned in the report. Longueuil in Québec, Canada had the lowest annual operating cost mentioned ($12.91 million).
Meanwhile, the top of the list was dominated by the United States, specifically California. In fact, the four esports software development locations with the highest annual operating costs were all Californian cities (San Rafael, Redwood City, Santa Monica, and Irvine).
Top 25 U.S. And Canadian Locations
Locations included in the Boyd analysis demonstrate a diverse range of site selection strengths, including available skillsets in programming and software development, precedent concentrations of software, gaming, and digital multimedia industry operations, lifestyle amenities attractive to young tech workers, linkages to university esports activities and related academic programs in information technology.
The 25 top U.S. and Canadian locations named in the Boyd Report are ranked below by annual operating costs scaled to a newly constructed 50,000-square-foot software development center employing 150 workers.
OPERATING COST RANKING
|Esports Software Development Location||Total Annual Operating Costs|
|San Rafael, California||$23,802,146|
|Redwood City, California||$23,779,750|
|Santa Monica, California||$21,479,793|
|Blue Bell, Pennsylvania||$20,298,729|
|Northport, New York||$20,188,798|
|Ann Arbor, Michigan||$20,063,539|
|Hoffman Estates, Illinois||$20,053,239|
|Highlands Ranch, Colorado||$19,504,751|
|Egg Harbor Twp., New Jersey||$18,994,900|
|Coral Gables, Florida||$18,827,342|
|Victor, New York||$18,524,700|
|St. Petersburg, Florida||$18,227,565|
|Burnaby, British Columbia||$14,004,902|
Esports Costs Under The Microscope
Historic levels of inflation, upcoming corporate tax hikes, and expense burdens associated with reshoring software jobs back to North America are all causing a greater focus on operating cost structures within all sectors of the software industry, including esports – where operating costs are increasingly under the microscope.
With a recessionary economy to deal with, it has been reported that Overwatch League teams are preparing for a belt-tightening on expenses after a recent meeting between team reps and Activision-Blizzard executives. That meeting provided guidance to team owners for the first time since video game publisher Activision-Blizzard accepted an acquisition offer from Microsoft, a merger scheduled to take place in mid-2023. Activision-Blizzard is owed as much as $420 million in franchise payments from Overwatch League and Call of Duty League teams, according to The Jacob Wolf Report.
The Overwatch League recently lost a number of key sponsors after allegations against Activision-Blizzard levied by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing in conjunction with a lawsuit accusing the developer of sexual harassment and gender discrimination. Also, the Paris Eternal team last week cut four players, replacing them with U.S. players from the Contenders secondary league, a move seen as a cost-saving one.
(All information was provided by The Boyd Company, Inc.)