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Saudi eSports Federation Chief Says Kingdom Has Huge Potential in Market

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The Saudi government has recently supported a trend of investing in the gaming business and eSports in general to boost the culture of gaming there. Both Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan and the Chief of the Saudi eSports Federation have spoken out about the country’s expected growth in this market by advancing the diversification plans in accordance with Vision 2030

Kazem and Khater Abdul, the duo behind the Arabic online casino website www.a7labet.com, closely follow the developments and discuss the growing eSports market in Saudi Arabia in a weekly podcast. According to them, these investments are meant to satisfy the growing cultural and social interest of Saudi Arabia’s gaming population, as well as an economic measure implemented by the government and their return on investment.

Within the next decade, the Saudi eSports market is expected to grow into one of the world’s largest. Here are the factors that will enable this expansion:

Impact on the Economy

The gaming industry in Saudi Arabia is steadily growing. The arabic website The gaming market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) countries, including both eSports and video games, hit more than $1 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow to $3.14 billion by 2025. And being possibly the largest gaming market, with the United Arab Emirates and Egypt as its closest competitors, Saudi Arabia is becoming the region’s powerhouse.

Investments in the gaming industry of Saudi Arabia have exponentially grown and increased. Those investments are further encouraged by the increasing popularity of gaming in the country and the popularity of eSports in general. With almost half of the Saudi population considering themselves novice or regular gamers, over 20 million gaming enthusiasts exist in the state that claims to regularly occupy the online gaming world. 

And while the majority plays eSports as a hobby, there is a growing number of professional players emerging from the shadows as the rise of the online gaming industry continues to grow in Saudi Arabia.

Rise of the Culture of Gaming

In parallel with increased economic diversification, the investments by the states in eSports and gaming, in general, are reflected in the culture. This can be seen by the more frequent participation of Saudi youth in various gaming and eSports events and happenings, either in a casual fashion or in a professional capacity. As popularity also rises in the country, the competition increases. With the success of the Saudi Arabian Federation for Electronic and Intellectual Sports holding its first gaming and eSports tournaments in 2020, more are set to follow. Other tournaments are also set to debut in the future, with private platforms, such as Saudi-based Kafu Games, acting as future hosts.

As a further way to stimulate the industry, the government of Saudi Arabia has also launched many initiatives supporting programmers and aspiring eSports players. One of these bold initiatives is creating a video game studio and opening an eSports academy which will be part of Neom smart city. Another is the Tuwaiq Academy, which offers courses for newbies that want to learn programming and professionals that want to brush up on their programming skills.

Backed by High-Ranking Figures in the Country

Given its convenient location between the east and west, the chairman of the Saudi eSports Federation’s (SEF) board of directors believes that Saudi Arabia has a huge untapped potential in the eSports market. This is further confirmed by the comments of prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan, noting the role that youth can play in the development of eSports in Saudi Arabia. Considering that more than 21 million young people make up the country’s structure, one can see how this market can rapidly grow. The prince’s comments also came during the tour in South Korea, participating in the World eSports Summit held there. During the tour, he touched upon all the developments Saudi Arabia planned on making for the eSports sector, all in an effort to attract and develop future talents and investments.

Cementing a Place in a Global eSports Industry

The increased social and financial investment can propel Saudi Arabia into a fast-growing global industry when it comes to eSports and the gaming community. With strong state support already, gamers are encouraged to get involved in the industry in a number of ways, growing the Saudi youth culture towards this new field of interest.

With the gaming industry likely to enjoy even more growth of support from the government in the years to come, more participation from residents and citizens, and greater interest from private businesses, it’s safe to assume that Saudi Arabia is on the right track to becoming a force in the eSports world.

Asia

Continent 8 Technologies continues global expansion with two key hires in Asia

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Continent 8 Technologies continues global expansion with two key hires in Asia
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Lalaine P. Vidal joins award-winning infrastructure provider as Business Development Manager and Christopher Caturay as Technical Solutions Architect

Continent 8, the award-winning global managed hosting, connectivity and security provider, continues to build out its presence in Asia with two key hires.

Lalaine P. Vidal joins as Business Development Manager and Christopher Caturay as Technical Solutions Architect. Both will be based out of the Philippines and will be responsible for supporting the company’s growing customer base across the region.

Vidal has more than a decade of experience in sales and marketing across a range of sectors including banking, BPO, real estate, telco and IT cyber security. Caturay is a cyber security professional with experience in the end-to-end process of deploying solutions and applying best practices for various businesses and in a range of sectors.

The hires form part of a wider push in Asia, where Continent 8 already offers infrastructure, connectivity and security solutions to a range of customers in iGaming and beyond.

The company’s cyber security offering has seen exceptional growth in recent years, keeping up with the evolving cyber security landscape, and with cyber-attacks at an all-time high in Asia, Continent 8 can defend a customers’ infrastructure against the growing number of threats.

Lalaine P. Vidal, Business Development Manager at Continent 8 Technologies, said: “The opportunity to join Continent 8 was one I simply couldn’t turn down. It is the leading infrastructure provider in the industry, and I am looking forward to using my experience in sales and marketing to drive the business forward and further establish its presence and customer base across Asia.”

Christopher Caturay, Technical Solutions Architect at Continent 8 Technologies, said: “Asia presents unique challenges when it comes to infrastructure and cyber security. I’m excited to be working for a business that has a comprehensive and unique solution for businesses targeting the Asian market.”

Peter Williams, Managing Director – Asia Pacific at Continent 8 Technologies, added: “Lalaine and Christopher are great talents and are a brilliant addition to the Continent 8 team in Asia. This is an important market for us and one where we have ambitious growth plans that we are actively deploying.

“Lalaine will play a vital role in introducing more businesses to Continent 8 and the award-winning solutions that we provide, while Christopher will ensure that customers are deploying the right products and services for their organisation. This localised approach, along with having feet on the ground, is what makes Continent 8 the go-to infrastructure and security provider for companies targeting Asia and other markets around the world.”

Via network points of presence in Hong Kong, Japan (Tokyo), Philippines (Manila), Singapore and Taiwan (Taipei), Continent 8 connects Asia to the rest of the world over a high-capacity, fully redundant private network comprising 90+ locations.

Meet the Continent 8 team at ASEAN Gaming Summit, 21-23 March 2023 at the Manila Marriott Hotel.

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Removal of Hearthstone as Contested Esports Title At Hangzhou Asian Games 2023

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Esports is going to make its debut at the Asian Games 2023 as a proper medal event, earlier in 2018 it was there as a demonstration title. The Asian Games 2022, originally scheduled for September last year, will now be held from September 23 to October 8, 2023. This multi-nation event will cement the industry mark into a mainstream sports scene. 
 

The seven official events, and publishers, are:

1. Arena of Valor Asian Games Version

2. Dota 2

3. Dream Three Kingdoms 2

4. EA SPORTS FIFA branded soccer games

5. League of Legends

6. PUBG Mobile Asian Games Version

7. Street Fighter V

Showing his disappointment, please find below the quote on behalf of Mr. Lokesh Suji, Director, Esports Federation of India & Vice President of the Asian Esports Federation (AESF) on this announcement:
 

“It is unfortunate to hear that Hearthstone will not be included in the upcoming Asian Games, especially because India’s first Esports medal at the tournament came in this very title in 2018 when Tirth Mehta clinched the bronze medal. That achievement holds a special place in our Esports community and we were hopeful that our talented athletes Shikhar Choudhary and Karthik Varma would be able to bring similar honour to the country by competing in this official medal sport.

Nonetheless, we respect the OCA’s decision and remain confident that our athletes will perform at the highest level in the other titles to make the country proud. We look forward to supporting them as they represent India in the prestigious tournament.”

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SuperGaming To Bring India’s Leading Gaming YouTuber Techno Gamerz as Playable Character in New Game

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SuperGaming To Bring India’s Leading Gaming YouTuber Techno Gamerz as Playable Character in New Game
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Leading international game developer SuperGaming has partnered with Techno Gamerz aka Ujjwal Chaurasia to bring him as a character in its soon to be revealed game. With over 30 million subscribers, Techno Gamerz is one of India’s biggest YouTubers. He has about 9 billion views on YouTube until now through a variety of gaming content ranging from tutorials to web series.

As the poster child for gaming in India, Ujjwal will help SuperGaming make its games better for young Indian audiences. He will feature in the company’s soon to be announced game with his appearance as a playable character as well as providing valuable insights and feedback to SuperGaming.

“With more than 70 percent of his audience being the young demographic in India, partnering with Techno Gamerz was the obvious choice,” says Roby John, co-founder and CEO of SuperGaming. “With Techno Gamerz as a playable character in our soon to be revealed game, we’re bringing a new way for fans to interact with their favourite creators and creators to build a closer connection with their fans.”

SuperGaming will also host several on-ground events based on its games, allowing fans of Techno Gamerz and other creators to meet them in person. This is an evolution of how SuperGaming has crafted its biggest hits — MaskGun and Silly Royale. Popular multiplayer shooter MaskGun has amassed over 67 million players since its launch.

This is due to a relentless focus on putting its players frst with consistent community collaborations, even leading to some of its biggest community members featuring in-game as well as celebrating India-specifc events like Diwali.

Similarly, the recently released social deduction game Silly Royale has over 22 million players in no small part thanks to regular community and content creator initiatives. The company hopes to do the same for its future releases through this partnership with Techno Gamerz.

SuperGaming has more than 300 million players across its games with an audience that spans the globe. Its recent hits include MaskGun and Silly Royale. SuperGaming is also developing Indus, an upcoming Indo-Futuristic battle royale for mobile, PC, and consoles as well as several yet to be revealed titles. All of these are built on its SuperPlatform powered by Google Cloud.

“When SuperGaming approached me with the idea of featuring me in its soon to be revealed game, I was genuinely surprised with the team’s passion and expertise,” says Techno Gamerz aka Ujjwal Chaurasia. “I believe that the future of gaming is creator-driven and community-first and this is a step in building that future.The team is on the same wavelength as me and I can’t wait to tell you more in the days to come.”

“Gaming and content creation have always been two sides of the same coin and now we’re bringing the best of both worlds together through this partnership,” says Pranav Panpalia, founder, OpraahFx, the talent agency that manages Techno Gamerz. “The fact that SuperGaming chose to approach Techno Gamerz speaks volumes about how creators have evolved to be the new celebrities the gaming community follow and look up to.”

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