„Setting records is always expected with the Intel Extreme Masters, but this was unprecedented. I haven’t seen an event with queues as long as in Katowice hours before the event started. Together with ESL we have created something truly iconic.”
This is how George Woo, global sponsorships manager at Intel, summed up the latest edition of Intel Extreme Masters and ESL One, which had been held from 12th to 15th of March 2015 in the „Spodek” arena and International Convention Center. The organizers officially published viewing figures this week (infographic presented below).
The both venues were visited by 104 000 e-sport fans during the four-day event. More than 73 million stream sessions were recorded across all broadcasts, with each of the competitions at the 2015 IEM Expo breaking ESL records to become the most watched streams in their respective games. A total of over one billion minutes were watched at the ESL YouTube channel. Also, the content from Katowice brought in more than five million views in the ten days after the event, organizers revealed at their official website.
Michal Blicharz, managing director of pro gaming at ESL, said: „It is amazing to see how in five years Intel Extreme Masters went from being a side show at a tech or comic expo somewhere to being its own exhibition with a truly mainstream level appeal. It is a massive turnaround that represents incredible cultural growth for e-sports as a whole, with steady viewership that regularly rivals that of other major sports productions.”
On the third day of the event, Intel Extreme Masters and ESL One live streams reached a peak concurrent viewership of over 1 000 000, thereby breaking the existing Twitch record for highest concurrent viewership across a single event, with an estimated global peak of 1,6 million concurrent viewers across both Twitch and Asian streaming platforms.
„I remember what people were saying when we decided to take Intel Extreme Masters to the „Spodek” arena in Katowice, the first stadium event for e-sports in the western world 24 months ago. People said that the community wasn’t ready for a pioneer event like that. Three seasons of competition later, I think we can safely say that e-sports can create unparalleled memorable experiences. The community was ready then, and they’re more than ready now. A very big thank you to everyone who made this event possible. We all share in its success” – said Ralf Reichert, managing director of ESL.