Success Story

Haitian-Trinidadian streamer Kai Cenat breaks Twitch viewership record with sleepover stream

Kai Cenat is a Twitch and YouTube creator with a total following of 22 million. The 22-year-old has captured a massive audience with his gaming and pranks.

On Twitch alone, he has over 6.5 million followers, making him the most-subscribed user on the platform and 4 million on YouTube. A New York native, who is of Haitian and Trinidadian heritage, he first began creating YouTube prank and challenge content in 2018.

By 2021, he landed on Twitch and took the platform by storm. Just like how Khaby Lame rules TikTok, Cenat rules Twitch. He made history this week by hosting a record-breaking stream featuring Kevin Hart and Druski. LeBron James also made a special appearance, according to The Source.

According to the platform, his stream reached a peak of 712.6K concurrent viewers, surpassing the previous North American record set by Ninja’s Fortnite stream with Drake in 2018, which had 644.8K concurrent viewers.

What is more, the stream, which lasted 11.5 hours, drew an impressive 4.95 million unique viewers, compared to Ninja’s 3.13 million unique viewers over 22.5 hours.

Streaming popularity

Cenat gained notoriety for his gaming streams and reactions to viral pop culture phenomena, according to Rolling Stone. Some of his antics have been chaotic and drawn criticism. Besides disrupting college classes by cooking eggs in lecture halls, a riot broke out in New York City recently after Cenat told his millions of followers to show up in the Union Square area for free gaming consoles.

He has also suffered several bans from Twitch. According to Rolling Stone, his first two bans involved accidentally sharing graphic photos as he scrolled a subreddit forum created by his fans. He got banned for a month in 2022 for making threatening comments. Last year alone, he got two bans. He passed out on-camera after eating cannabis edibles and reportedly simulated sexual activity in a game — these incidents probably caused the ban, viewers say.

Nonetheless, he keeps weathering the challenges that come his way. Several high-profile rappers like Lil Uzi and 21 Savage have appeared on his show for hangouts and interviews.

Like other content creators, Cenat has released his own singles, in addition to taking his content global. For instance, a recent trip abroad resulted in the video “I Rented Us Girlfriends In Japan.”

Also, in January 2023, he achieved a milestone by successfully livestreaming around the clock for a 30-day “subathon” to encourage subscriptions. He reportedly broke the previous record for active subscribers, with more than 300,000 paying viewers. 

This move saw him win “Streamer of the Year” at the Streamer Awards in March. He had won a similar award in October 2022. Among Forbes Top Creators List 2023, Cenat boasts the highest engagement rate, with nearly 26% of his audience tuning in to watch his hyperactive livestreams, Forbes said.

According to Forbes, his social media activities have seen him make $4.7 million. This puts him among the top-earning content creators in the world, per Forbes.

Abu Mubarik

Abu Mubarik is a journalist with years of experience in digital media. He loves football and tennis.

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