E-sports to be included in the Asian Games
OCA President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah (left) shaking hands with Zhang Dazhong, founder and chief executive of Alisports. Photo: ocasia.org
18.04.2017By Play the Game
Alisports, the sports subsidiary of the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, has announced a strategic partnership with the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) that aims at bringing electronic sports to the Asian Games by 2022 as an official medal sport, says a press release from OCA. E-sport will be on the programme already at this year’s Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat and at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games “reflecting the rapid development and popularity of this new form of sports participation among the youth”, says the OCA press release.
“The Olympic Council of Asia has constantly been committed to the heritage, development and improvement of Asian sports, and we are extremely pleased about the strategic partnership with Alisports," said OCA President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah.
“We look forward to further collaboration with Alisports in regards to digital sports concepts along with sporting events. We are sure that the extensive organising capabilities of Alisports, and their experience in e-sports, will assist the OCA in developing all sports.”
Alibaba last year made a close to $150 million investment in the International e-Sports Federation and has promoted e-sport by organising a worldwide tournament with a more than $5.5 million prize pool among other initiatives, writes China Daily.
As a part of this new partnership, Alibaba will implement a new marketing strategy designed to expand the market and increase advertising value for OCA and its sponsors.