Chinese video gaming company miHoYo, creator of global hit action role-playing game Genshin Impact, has chosen Singapore as the site of its metaverse subsidiary’s headquarters, where it plans to add “hundreds of jobs” by the end of this year, as more mainland firms set up shop in the city state amid Beijing’s tightened regulatory regime.
The Southeast Asia base of HoYoverse, a new unit that miHoYo announced in February this year, will serve as a major hub for “global distribution and operations” that will work closely with the company’s other offices in providing “technical support for game development”, the Shanghai-based video gaming firm said in a statement on Monday.
That represents miHoYo’s fifth overseas outpost after establishing offices in Tokyo, Seoul, Los Angeles and Montreal.
“Our team in Singapore will play a crucial role in broadening our global development and service network,” HoYoverse co-founder Liu Wei said in the statement. He is also one of the three co-founders of miHoYo.
HoYoverse is currently hiring employees for 51 new positions in Singapore, including 20 related to programming and technology, and nine for operations, according to the miHoYo subsidiary’s career web page.
“We’re eager for more creative minds from diverse backgrounds to join us in building the future,” Liu said.
The latest initiative by miHoYo shows that interest in metaverse-related developments remains strong among China’s hi-tech companies, while building a new outpost in Singapore follows a trend among these firms to expand operations in that highly developed Southeast Asian city.
The announcement of HoYoverse’s move to Singapore came on the same day it was revealed that miHoYo invested 100 million yuan (US$14.82 million) in an industry fund set up by Goertek in May, according to the Shenzhen-listed firm’s regulatory filing on Monday.
For miHoYo, its investment represents an 18 per cent of stake in the enterprise called Qingdao Tongge Phase I Venture Capital Fund Partnership. This fund, in which video gaming studio 37Games is also an investor, focuses on start-ups involved in the fields of VR, AR, advanced manufacturing, smart vehicles and semiconductors.
Goertek, known for supplying acoustic components to customers like Apple, is also a contract manufacturer of VR headsets for Meta Platforms’ Reality Labs, the corporate successor to Oculus.
HoYoverse and the new industry fund bolsters the vow made early last year by miHoYo co-founder Cai Haoyu to help create a virtual world – depicted in films like The Matrix and Ready Player One – where “one billion people around the world can live” in the next 10 to 30 years.