The Casino operator is hosting the event in a bid to diversify through online sports and entertainment.
Macau.- Casino operator Melco Resorts & Entertainment will host a three-day esports event at Macau’s City of Dreams from today with 50 competitors to take part in the GBA Sim Racing Grand Prix (SRGP) 2020 Grand Final.
The initiative is an attempt to diversify the gaming business in a city heavily impacted by the pandemic. Traditional casinos are working with reduced capacity while border measures in the SAR are still strictly controlled, limiting tourism.
While gaming tourism has long been the main activity in the city, Macau as a whole is looking to diversify following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Melco said: “As a global leader in integrated resorts, Melco is fully supportive of the Macau SAR Government’s initiatives to promote diversification and to further elevate the city as a multifaceted tourist destination.
“Melco is dedicated to developing local talent in esports industry – paving the path for Macau’s local players to participate in national tournaments.
The company added: “Esports has developed to become an attractive contemporary entertainment option, and Melco is delighted to bring this emerging new generation sport and entertainment experience to Macau.”
The event, a collaboration with CCTV, is the culmination of a competition launched in October with online and satellite tournaments that saw more than 15,000 players take part in Jiangmen, Guangzhou and Zhuhai, Hong Kong and Macau.
According to data from Melco, close to 60 million viewed broadcasts of the games so far.
This week’s event will welcome 30 players from around the region to a semi-final on Thursday, followed by 20 local Macau players, each group fighting it out via 20 minutes of free practice, 20 minutes of qualifying and then a 40-minute race.
The top 16 competitors will be joined by two qualifiers from Hong Kong for the Grand Final on Sunday. They will compete in a simulator race on the Macau Guia Circuit.
The event is supported by the Macau Sports Bureau and Guangdong Provincial Sports Bureau, directed by Guangdong Provincial Social Sports Center and organised by Guangdong Automobile and Motor Sports Federation and L&L Sailing Up Sports.