You may not have heard of Tencent yet, but if you're into eSports, you'll certainly be introduced to them during the next few years.
Tencent is a Chinese internet investment company that has purchased or invested in some of the biggest names in internet and video game history. Tencent has subsidiaries including Riot Games (League of Legends), Supercell, (Clash Royale) Epic Games, (Gears of War) and a range of other internet companies.
Over the next five years, Tencent has pledged to invest close to $15 billion dollars in the eSports industry. This $15 billion will go towards running tournaments across the globe, improving prize pools and payouts, developing new talent, and helping to lay the groundwork for the future of eSports and providing tools for upcoming teams and organizations to get off of the ground.
Tencent hasn't given too much information about what exact plans they have prepared for the next five years, but they seem very dedicated to turning eSports into an even bigger industry than it already is. With Tencent owning both Riot Games and Supercell, it's clear that they're looking to bring this new eSports growth to all platforms that support competitive video games.
With Tencent's connections, the $15 billion will also go towards building the kind of infrastructure that a long-lasting industry needs. This will be especially true for Chinese eSports, but Tencent's contributions are no doubt going to help eSports on a global level as well.