Singtel to hold inaugural eSports tournament with $407,000 prize pool

Singtel CEO Arthur Lang (second from left) with Carrie Kwik, Executive Director of Attractions, Entertainment & Tourism Concept Development, a Razer representative and video game cosplayers (PHOTO: Abdul Rahman Azhari/Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore)

Who says it doesn’t pay to get good at video games?

Come this October, qualified players of two popular games will get to compete in the Singtel Group’s new regional eSports tournament for a prize pool of US$300,000 (S$407,000).

At a media conference on Tuesday (10 July), it was announced that the telco’s inaugural PVP eSports Championship – to be held in Singapore from 5 to 7 October – will feature leading mobile game “Arena of Valor” and popular PC game “Dota 2”.

The tournament will see qualified teams from Asian countries such as Singapore, Australia and India take on invited professional teams from North America, Europe and China.

Singtel is partnering with eSports industry players such as Razer, the Mineski Group, Blizzard and Garena in setting up the tournament, which will be organised by eSports event organiser MET. The event will also encompass the Singapore stop of the global tour for Blizzard’s popular online strategy card game “Hearthstone”.

Through the tournament, Singtel hopes to build a strong regional eSports community, while also growing the telco’s gaming and digital content business in the Asia Pacific region – which is expected its eSports audience to grow to 290 million by 2021, according to the release.

“We need to cultivate talent to create an ecosystem (for eSports). You need homegrown talent, and that is something that we are quite focused on,” said Singtel’s international group chief executive officer Arthur Lang, who added that the telco and its partners “really want to train the champions across the region”.

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