Tencent has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the UK Department International Trade to bolster its relationship with the UK government. In doing so, University of Oxford will host tournaments and offer courses with a view to increasing the profile of esports, as well as bringing more talent into it.
While it’s known that esports courses will be available through the University, that exact offerings and topics are yet to be revealed.
Tencent has many fingers in the pie that is esports, so there’s perhaps no better company for the government to be working alongside. For starters, it owns Riot Games – the developer and publisher of League of Legends – and has a majority share in Epic Games, the studio behind hit Battle Royale title Fortnite. It plans to distribute Fortnite into China under and has the publishing rights for another Battle Royale game – PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds – in the same country.
As part of the aforementioned deal, Tencent also plans on creating a British version of its well-known racing game, QQ Speed. Chinese elements will be swapped out with new British characters, costumes, and music so it’s more appropriate for the market.
University of York recently partnered with ESL to launch an industry-backed esports module in the Department of Theatre, Film and Television. The module has been devised with the goal of teaching students exactly how esports is capturing the attention and interest of fans worldwide.
Esports Insider says: If Tencent intends to fully expand into the UK, then strengthening its ties with the government is a good way to go about it. While we’re disappointed in the lack of details surrounding the courses available at Oxford, if it’s anything like York’s offering then we’ll feel confident about the venture.