Last week, Chinese esports organization Royal Never Give Up (RNG) crushed their opponent, South Korean team DWG KIA, in a best-of-five game to win the championship in the League of Legends Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) in Iceland, becoming the first LPL team ever to win the MSI top prize twice.
Among the top business stories across China’s esports industry: domestic esports education company SuperGen Education announced that it has closed a Series A funding round worth more than $4.5 million; Chinese esports organization JingDong Gaming (JDG) announced a rebranding, as well as plans for a new LPL home venue in Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area (BDA); and finally, OPPO signed a three-year partnership deal with TJ Sports for the League of Legends Wild Rift Pro League (WPL).
SuperGen Education Wraps Up Undisclosed Series A Funding Round
On May 24, Chinese esports education company SuperGenEducation announced that it has concluded an undisclosed Series A funding round, led by Shanghai Yuangui Asset. According to an interview with domestic esports outlet Sports Money, Jitang Qiu, the founder of SuperGen Group stated that investments garnered in the round amounted to more than ￥30 million ($4.5 million).
In Feb 2021, SuperGen Education signed a partnership with Tencent Esports to release esports-related online courses on Tencent’s live-streaming platform Penguin Esports.
SuperGen Group is also the parent company of the Chinese esports organization Edward Gaming (EDG). The company initiated construction of its $1.5 billion “Shanghai International Culture and Creative Esports Center” plan in January.
The concept of “esports education” originated in 2014. In recent years, more than 50 education institutions have opened various esports degree programs. According to the relevant department’s statistics, the shortage of esports talents in China has risen to about 2 million, including but not limited to positions like esports operation and management, esports coaching, analysis, media operations, video editing and commentary.
JDG Rebrands, A New LPL Home Venue Near JD.com Headquarters in Beijing
On May 23, JingDong Gaming (JDG), the esports division of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com, hosted its fourth anniversary event in Shanghai. At the event, the organization announced a rebranding, as well as their decision to locate the LPL home venue in the Beijing Economic-Technological Development Area (BDA). JDG also unveiled a social media partnership deal with Weibo at the event.
According to Enni Xiao, the vice president of JD.com’s marketing department, the JDG brand upgrade will include new team and brand logos, as well as official JDG “cheering gestures”. The design concept for the new team logo is an extension of JDG team culture but also intends to express the organization’s “brave and fearless” team spirit. He also mentioned that JDG will collaborate with some comic IPs to create co-branded products in the future.
It should be noted that JDG will also move its offices and players’ living space to BDA, adjacent to the headquarters of JD.com. The e-commerce juggernaut manages more than 50,000 employees working at its headquarters, offering a potential source of loyal audience members.
Other Esports Business News:
- Chinese smartphone maker OPPO signed a three-year strategic partnership deal with TJ Sports for 2021-2023 League of Legends: Wild Rift Pro League. OPPO Reno6 Pro+ will serve as the official equipment for the competition.
- Ukrainian tournament organizer WePlay Esports will host the second Dota Pro Circuit Major, the $500,000 WePlay AniMajor in Kyiv from June 2-13. However, multiple Chinese teams encountered problems obtaining travel visas due to various changes in European flight schedules. Luckily for the participants, WePlay was able to find a workaround by organizing a private flight for all the teams.