Amazon’s video game streaming site Twitch is about to have another competitor, VentureBeat reports, just a few months after news broke that Google is launching a dedicated YouTube Gaming site and mobile app.
Chinese social media celebrity and businessman Wang Sicong, who shelled out $US24,000 (£15,000) on rose gold Apple Watches for his two dogs, is launching a live-streaming video platform called Panda TV.
Amazon spent $US970 million (£629 million) last year to acquire Twitch, far and away the leading site for live-broadcasted video games. It is already trying to boost its presence in Taiwan, meaning it’s likely to be interested in the 408 million online gamers in China, half of which also watch live-streaming content, according to the South China Morning Post.
Wang Sicong is the son of China’s richest man Wang Jianlin, chairman of Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda. The 26-year-old Sicong is a director at the family-owned firm, which is the country’s largest private property developer. It is also China’s biggest cinema chain operator, owning AMC Entertainment and Wanda Entertainment.
Sicong announced on Chinese social network Weibo over the weekend that he would be chief executive of a new game-streaming site called Panda TV, which according to Chinese publication QQ Tech was registered as a business in July. Sicong didn’t share an exact date for the launch of the service, though.
Wang Sicong has his own professional online-gaming team, and in an interview with the BBC he explained why the hobby was so popular in China: It allows people to escape that system.
VentureBeat pulled some more information on Wang Sicong’s gaming past to date from the South China Morning Post:
In 2011, Wang bought the pro-gaming team formerly known as Catastrophic Cruel Memory (CCM), now Invictus Gaming (iG), for about $US6 million in order to promote e-sports in China… The club is sponsored by computer accessories maker Logitech and PC vendor Asus. iG has teams competing in Defence of the Ancients (DotA) 2, League of Legends, Crossfire and StarCraft II.