Tencent joins Chinese tech firms investing in Singapore

Company forges on with global push after India, U.S. setbacks

Gaming giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. said on Tuesday it would develop a regional hub for Southeast Asia in Singapore, opening a new office and becoming the latest Chinese tech firm to invest in the city-State.

The new hub comes on the heels of a planned expansion by TikTok owner ByteDance and investment by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. as firms look to deepen their exposure to fast-growing Southeast Asia โ€” home to about 650 million people.

Singapore has also gained fresh appeal as a base for Chinese corporate operations, benefiting from the political tensions that have rocked rival hub Hong Kong and growing distrust of China in the United States and other parts of the world.

The plans highlight Tencentโ€™s international ambitions despite setbacks in India where some of its apps have been banned and in the United States which has flagged an imminent ban on U.S. transactions relating to its WeChat messaging app.

โ€œWe view Tencentโ€™s decision as a necessary step to extend its enterprise service offering (cloud computing business) to this new market,โ€ said Alex Liu, an analyst with China Renaissance.

He also noted that Tencent had several minority investments in Southeast Asia and had been making deeper forays into the regionโ€™s gaming market.

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