Case Study:

Team and Facility Feasibility and Viability Assessment



Higher Education, Nonprofit, Foundation

Our Role

  • Education on the Evolving Esports Ecosystem
  • Market Research
  • Operational Design and Planning
  • Financial Modeling


Formed only in mid-2016, the National Association of Collegiate Esports already includes 34 diverse member institutions – from major athletic powerhouse to regional liberal arts schools – who provide nearly $6 million in scholarships to esports athletes annually. Our client, a mid-sized university with over 5,000 students, was searching for answers on the feasibility of a potential esports program at their institution and a plan for program implementation.


The Hill Group conducted primary and secondary research of the esports industry, particularly related to esports on college campuses. The Hill Group discovered that growing interest among younger audiences has encouraged higher education institutions to invest in esports. The National Association of Collegiate esports (NACE) formed in mid-2016 and has already grown to include 33 colleges or universities with varsity esports programs, including nine Master’s Colleges and Universities. According to NACE, these schools combined provide $6 million in scholarships each year to esports student athletes.

Once it was determined that an esports program would be feasible, consultants investigated and developed plans for the organization and operation of an esports team, and modeled the financial impacts of start-up and ongoing operation.