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Tencent announces partnership with UK creative industries

Tencent and the Department of International Trade have revealed a new strategic collaboration focusing on film, TV, art and gaming in the UK. As a result, the Chinese giant will “work closely with British institutions and corporations, including British Tourist Authority, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), British Fashion Council (BFC), Springer Nature and many others to launch various ‘Culture Creative’ initiatives,” the announcement said.

As far as gaming is concerned, the first step of this partnership will be the release of mobile title QQ Speed in the UK. Having released last year worldwide, the racing game has 100m users and over 20m daily active users to date. The British version will “feature unique cultural elements in new tracks, game characters, background music and game character costumes,” Tencent said.

Tencent will also support esports in the UK, by creating “tournaments and courses” in partnership with the University of Oxford. The firm didn’t reveal more details on what these will be.

In the film and TV sector, Tencent Penguin Picture (the firm’s production company) will “sign a three-year partnership with the BBC on co-production, content development, business licensing, and marketing and distribution of content-rich documentaries on diverse topics,” mentioning Blue Planet II (co-produced by Tencent and the BBC) has an example of a previous successful partnership between the two firms.

Liam Fox MP, UK Secretary of State for International Trade commented: “We are delighted to enter into collaboration with Tencent, drawing on each other’s strengths to accelerate the growth of the global digital creative industries, in which the UK is a world leader. As an international economic department, we are determined to help UK companies to forge new global trading ties that will boost trade, drive growth and provide jobs to every part of the country.”

Seng Yee Lau, senior executive VP at Tencent, added: “The culture and technology industries in the United Kingdom are well recognized around the world, and we believe that there will be a lot of collaboration opportunities in the future. Imagine a time, not long from now, when the empowering nature of digitization is available to everyone in the world. What we are doing today is a first step towards making that image a reality.”

About Marie Dealessandri

Marie Dealessandri is MCV’s senior staff writer, having joined the publication during its days as a weekly magazine. After testing the waters of the film industry in France and being a radio host and reporter in Canada, she settled for the games industry in London in 2015. She can be found (very) occasionally tweeting @mariedeal, usually on a loop about Baldur’s Gate, Hollow Knight and the Dead Cells soundtrack.

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