As esports gains popularity, business and organizations become eager to invest in the industry that has become a worldwide phenomenon; soon, it will also become a part of one of the world's largest sporting events.
On Apr 17, the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and Alisports, Alibaba's sports-focused subsidiary, announced that they will be partnering to put esports on the official program of the 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China. In addition, esports will be a demonstration event at the OCA's 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Art Games (AIMAG) in September and the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The Asian Games is seen as the second-largest sporting event in the world, the first being the Olympics. Esports' inclusion in such an event is because “(it will be) reflecting the rapid development and popularity of this new form of sports participation among the youth.”
OCA President HE Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah said: “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."
The game roster for these events has yet to be confirmed, but titles being considered for the 5th AIMAG include FIFA 2017, MOBAs (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) and RTS (Real Time Strategy) games.
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