Tencent have announced plans to build the world’s first “esports town” in China, and has reached a “framework agreement” with Wuhu City in China to start work on development.
The esports town is to include “an esports theme park, esports university, cultural and creative park, animation industrial park, creative block, tech entrepreneurial community and Tencent cloud data center.” and it’ll aim to teach and house esports players but also host national esporting events and acting as a hub for future games development by Tencent themselves.
Tencent’s online gaming division is the company’s most successful, and includes League of Legends developer Riot Games and Clash Royale / Clash of Clans developer Supercell. These recent acquisitions meant that half of the company’s revenue in 2016 came from the online gaming division, and it seems the company are looking to double down on this.
Esports team houses are now relatively commonplace, especially in the East, but it’s hard to shake the feeling that these big esports-centered industrial parks could become commonplace, especially as big-money non-endemic brands enter the space with money to spend.