What happened: Tencent is aiming to increase overseas revenue for its cloud computing arm by four to five times this year, said Da Zhiqian, vice president of Tencent Cloud. Servicing Chinese gaming companies looking to tap opportunities in foreign markets is a major driver behind its global ambitions, Da said. A presence in overseas markets will also serve as an advantage as Tencent’s other business units expand beyond China, he added.
Why it’s important: Tencent’s cloud unit first expanded abroad in 2016. It now has data centers in countries including the US, Canada, Singapore, India, and Germany. Tencent teased its cloud gaming platform “Tencent Instant Play” in March, and began testing another cloud gaming service called “Start” last month. China’s increasingly competitive market has prompted some cloud service providers to shift their focus abroad. Tencent Cloud held the second-largest share of China’s public cloud market last year, behind Alibaba, but is up against fierce competition outside of China. Overseas, the cloud market is largely dominated by global tech giants like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google.