Dubai Internet City to host Tencent Games regional HQ
New office to boost local gaming sector now worth over AED 1.2 billion
Tencent Games, the gaming arm of the Chinese internet giant, is to set up its MENA headquarters at Dubai Internet City.
The opening of Tencent Games’ regional headquarters is an indication of increased activities in the local and regional games industry which covers digital entertainment, education and cultural experiences. According to market research firm Newzoo, the revenue of the UAE games sector is estimated at AED 1.2 billion (USD 324 million) in 2019. Furthermore, over 80% of smartphone users in the UAE play mobile games.
“The launch of Tencent Games’ regional operations at DIC is an indication of their confidence in Dubai’s innovation-driven economy. DIC is already home to several multinational Chinese firms, and Tencent’s move to the region will further drive the growth of this sector. I am confident that we will continue to attract top innovators, entrepreneurs and international companies to Dubai,” said Ammar Al Malik, managing director of Dubai Internet City (DIC) and Dubai Outsource City (DOC).
“Gaming moves beyond entertainment and is increasingly used to engage and educate, and as more gamers and creative enthusiasts enter the industry, we can certainly expect the market to develop rapidly in the coming years. This will also be a crucial driving force in attracting game and interactive content developers to the region,” Al Malik added
According to a report by Statista released in late 2018, the UAE has the highest mobile penetration rate in the world at 173%– nearly double the country’s population. This is a considerable figure and represents a wealth of opportunities for game developers across the world, with revenues from mobile games representing more than half the income generated in the entire industry, while a rising number of people turn to mobile games for its interactivity and ease of access.
Vincent Wang, general manager of the global publishing department at Tencent Games, said, “The UAE’s high mobile and internet penetration is an extremely encouraging indicator for tech firms across the world, and is especially relevant to the global games industry. Through our partnership with DIC and by setting up our regional operations in Dubai – which is already home to some of the world’s most cutting-edge companies and highly skilled talents – we look forward to creating a platform that invests in and improves the regional games market, while encouraging local games enthusiasts and developers to push the boundaries of creativity and innovation.”