With regulatory restrictions and stagnated growth in its home market China, Tencent Holdings Ltd. is now looking to go mainstream outside of the Chinese mainland. The company announced on Friday, the launch of its first international video streaming service in Thailand.
Tencent is looking to diversify from its core gaming business, which is being pushed hard by regulatory authorities, resulting revenue growth at the slowest pace ever for the first quarter of 2019.
Thailand became the first targeted country for its overseas video streaming service because of the existing Thai user base, which will also provide company with the opportunity to expand into Southeast Asia, said Jeff Han, Senior Vice President of Tencent Penguin Pictures, which produces original content for the streaming business.
“This is the market we need to first enter to try to see whether an overseas launch could be a success for us, so we can continue the challenge,” Han said.
“We have our priority markets… the Chinese-speaking markets, which will be more receptive to our offerings,” he said.
Tencent Video will be named WeTV in Thailand and will feature original Chinese content from Tencent Penguin Pictures with Thai dubbing, and content created with local partners, Han said. He refused to comment on how much the company was investing overseas.
WeTV adds to Tencent’s music streaming service called JOOX and the mobile version of the PUBG games.
As per the latest results, Tencent’s video streaming subscriptions increased 43% in first quarter of 2019 on an annual basis, which accelerated the revenue growth in digital content.
Over 89 million people have subscribed to Tencent video in China. The company has more than 200 million daily active users.