Douyu TV, Chinese version of Twitch, raises $100m in Tencent-led round

Douyu TV, an online platform for live videos of people playing games, has raised $100 million in a funding round led by China’s internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. The deal reportedly values Douyu TV at over $1 billion.

Existing investors Sequoia Capital China, and Nanshan Capital also participated. Tencent’s investment was about $61 million, according to TencentQQ News (Chinese). The funding values Douyu TV at over $1 billion, making it the latest unicorn in China. 

Douyu is similar to Twitch, a US-based games video site acquired by Amazon in 2014 for $970 million. It is operated by Wuhan-based Guangzhou Douyu Internet Technology.

Founded in 2013, it ran a video site under a different name initially, and then changed to Douyu TV a year later. Tencent, which operates China’s biggest online-games company, will be hoping to retain its dominant position through this investment amidst signs of slowdown in revenue growth.

There are about 443.6 million gamers in China, and they are expected to push game revenue to about $22.2 billion this year. But the market for desktop games is becoming saturated, while competition is intensifying in the mobile gaming space.

Douyu’s platform has 200 million monthly users, out of which 15 million are daily active users. Such websites don’t generate a lot of revenue, but their broadcast of competitive games and live game play have become important marketing channels for game companies.

Tencent has invested in several game companies recently. It took at 20 per cent stake for $60 million in US-based Pocket Gems Inc., a 15 per cent stake in mobile games company Glu Mobile Inc., and a minority stake in Japan’s Aiming Inc., all within the space of one year.

Also read:

Video game maker Activision Blizzard to buy ‘Candy Crush’ creator King Digital for $5.9b

SE Asia’s white-hot mobile games market to mirror Thai growth slowdown

China’s YouTube ties up with digital movie studio RocketJump to source its popular videos

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.