If you claim yourself an esports fan but still don’t know what/who is Tencent, we recommend you look it up now. It is not an exaggeration to call Tencent a dominator in Chinese esports industry now. This corporation is huge.


Not to mention that they are running successful businesses in multiple fields like television and real estate, Tencent owns WeChat – the most popular social media in China. All of these aspects create a very smooth pathway for Tencent to join and become a dominant organization in gaming and esports industry

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WeChat - the most popular social media website in China is owned by Tencent

For every League of Legends (LoL) fans, you must have spotted that in the recent years, the game becomes more “Chinese”: more Chinese themed skins, new champions or reworked champions carrying Chinese vibes, Lunar New Year events lasting longer with more valued rewards. All of these are the results of Tencent purchasing Riot Games in 2011. And the same thing happened with Fortnite: Tencent bought and now owning Epic Games.

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LoL fans are seeing more and more Chinese themed skins

Even more, Tencent is currently owning a few more famous game developer. This list contains Supercell (a mobile game developer owning Clash of Clans, Clash Royale, Hay Day …), Miniclip SA (an online website gaming), Grinding Gear Games (a New Zealand game developer owning Path of Exile).

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Tencent is owning a lot of gaming company

All of these make Tencent become one of the most powerful gaming company in the world. And luckily for us, Tencent also sees esports as a promising long term investment. In 2018, Tencent has already created an ecosystem for esports in China with many esports titles. The MOBA mobile game Honor of Kings (also known as Arena of Valor in EU market) esports championships generated over 1.3 billion dollars in 2018 alone for Tencent.

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Honor of Kings (or Arena Of Valor) is a great mobile MOBA game by Tencent

In a recent interview, Mr. Hou Miao – Tencent’s e-sports division manager – said that while the short term revenues from esports are not enough to leave any profits (after subtracting the cost), esports have the capability to create long-term profits, as well as a safe play for gamers to entertain, learn and grow. Mr. Hou Miao also revealed a quite interesting fact is that many local Chinese governments are forming cooperation with Tencent in organizing and running high-level esports tournaments.

But Tencent doesn’t show any sign of slowing down. The ambitions of this gaming corporation are getting higher and higher every day. Tencent now is in the negotiation with EA to bring Apex Legends to China with an exclusive distribution right. Needless to introduce anything more about EA and Reswapn Entertainment’s newest battle Royale FPS hit. Despite being released for one month only, this game has taken down multiple Fortnite's record. Even more, Apex Legends has gained for itself numerous esports tournament already. Imagine how huge this game would be when it sets foot to the most crowded country in the world. If this deal goes well for Tencent and EA, it will bring Tencent to a whole new level of power in gaming and esports industry.

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Will Tencent have the exclusive distribution right for Apex Legends in China?

In February 2019, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security in China (CMHRSS) has officially recognized esports as a profession in China. That means you can put these professions in your CV: "esports operator" and "esports professional." The Chinese government is being more open to gaming industry than ever before, and with Chinese team Invictus Gaming’s convincing victory in the 2018 League of Legends World Championship last year, Tencent looks like they will have a bright 2019.