Shanghai starts construction of $898 million worth e-sports arena

China is constructing a 5.8 billion yuan ($898.2 million) e-sports arena in Shanghai to solidify its position as the world’s largest e-sports market. The Shanghai International New Cultural and Creative E-sports Center will spread across 500,000 square meters. It is designed to be a hub for e-sports teams and companies, with a hotel attached to it. This project is backed by SuperGen, the Chinese parent company of e-sports team Edward Gaming.

The e-sports arena is expected to open in 2024. This hub will further support Shanghai’s objective to become a global e-sports centre. Last year, Shanghai hosted the League of Legends World Championship, one of the biggest events in the e-sports calendar.

E-sports continues to grow globally. It is estimated to have generated $1.1 billion in 2020, according to an estimate by games market research firm Newzoo. Starting as online phenomena, the growing popularity of e-sports tournaments have managed to pack large stadiums over the last few years.

China has already established themselves as the leading player in this market since 70% of the country’s 720 million gamers play e-sports as per a report from Niko Partners. The ongoing pandemic has helped China to gain a better footing in this industry.

In a recent report by the Game Publishing Committee (GPC) of the China Audio-Video and Digital Publishing Association, the actual sales revenue of the Chinese game market reached 139 billion yuan ($20 billion) in the first half of 2020, which is an increase of more than 20% over the same period the previous year. With the new arena, China is expected to maintain its growth in the world of e-sports.

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