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Singtel, telcos sign deal to grow gaming, e-sports market

Singapore carrier Singtel, its wholly owned subsidiary Singtel Optus Pty. Ltd. and regional associates Bharti Airtel Ltd., Advanced Info Service PCL, Globe Telecom and Telkomsel have signed a memorandum of understanding to grow the gaming and e-sports market in Southeast Asia, Australia and India.

The partnership will look at content creation and distribution, scaling up e-sports and collaborating with a broader gaming ecosystem, Singtel said Oct. 7.

Gaming is popular among more than 200 million Singtel Group customers, the company said.

"Gaming is part of a digital world without borders, where fast network speeds, connectivity and local market knowledge are critical. It is a natural and perfect fit for Singtel and our partners," said Arthur Lang, CEO of Singtel's International Group.

The number of gamers in Singtel's region is expected to rise to more than 700 million by 2021 from 400 million in 2017, according to Singtel. E-sports viewership numbers are expected to double to more than 40 million by 2019.