Dubai is set to build a stadium dedicated to ‘e-sports’ in a bid to establish the emirate as a regional and global hosting hub for video gaming events.
A joint venture of Dubai Media Office and Tecom Group, the project has been endorsed by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Dubai Future Foundation, under the Dubai 10X initiative.
According to Dubai Media Office, the Dubai X-Stadium project was conceptualised to tap into the $99.6bn video gaming industry.
With e-sports events lying at the convergence of the media, gaming, and entertainment industries, global revenues are estimated to reach $1.5bn by 2020. Dubai’s tourism industry is also expected to benefit from the initiative, since e-sports are increasingly becoming a global-spectator sport.
HE Mona Ghanem Al Marri, director general of the Dubai Media Office, commented: "We are living in a world where digital culture is reshaping all aspects of life, including sports.
“This has led us to develop the concept of Dubai X-Stadium, which will consolidate Dubai's status as a key digital economy hub. The idea aims [to attract] millions of e-sports gamers, spectators, and enthusiasts from around the world and [offer] them unique on-line and in-person experiences.”
The project will also contribute to job creation and provide a platform that will enable creativity among the youth, Dubai Media Office noted.
HE Malek Al Malek, chief executive officer of Tecom Group, added: "Tecom Group, a member of Dubai Holding, is proud to take part in conceptualising the Dubai X-Stadium, where we seek to attract and harness the creativity, talent, and innovation of young generations, which is largely in line with our strategic vision in Tecom Group."