Singapore’s primary trade association for the gaming and esports industry, Singapore Games Association (“SGGA”), officially launches today. Supported by Enterprise Singapore (ESG), Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), SGGA aims to develop and support a sustainable gaming and esports ecosystem locally, while placing Singapore’s name on the world map.
The launch of SGGA builds on a growing local gaming and esports industry, with revenue in the Video Games segment in Singapore projected to reach US$130m in 2020 and US$138m by 2024, according to Statista, an online market research portal.
SGGA builds upon the work of the former Singapore Games Guild (SGG), a non-profit organisation founded in 2017 as a sister organisation of the International Games Development Association Singapore (IGDA|SG). SGG’s efforts were focused on supporting Singapore-based game development companies and advocating the creation of made-in-Singapore games. The new SGGA will take on the expanded role as an enabler to support the full spectrum of the gaming and esports industry.
SGGA’s long-term plans include the formulation and administration of Singapore's first accreditation scheme for the gaming and esports industry, and organising programmes to raise professional standards and community engagement. One such initiative is Singapore Esports, managed under SGGA to provide holistic development, and position Singapore as a country of choice for international esports tournaments and events.
The non-profit, membership-based Association also will empower members to network with local and international gaming and esports associations, organisations and businesses, to promote best practices and explore global opportunities. Upcoming plans include working with the organisers of gamescom asia to showcase made-in-Singapore games in the digital version of Gamescom this August. Workshops and capability development programmes to support professional growth are in the pipeline to support the gaming and esports industry’s need for a steady stream of highly-skilled, innovative and creative talent.
In-depth industry experience leading the way
The Association will be chaired by industry veteran Gwen Guo, co-founder and Creative Director of Imba Interactive, a game audio services studio based in Singapore. With close to a decade of experience at startups and corporate companies, Gwen will work alongside vice-chairperson Elicia Lee, the Managing Director of Eliphant, which specialises in game marketing, events, live stream production and esports in Asia. They will be supported by an Executive committee and Advisory Board of industry professionals. Please refer to Annex A for more details.
“It is an exciting time to rally the gaming and esports industry and work together to uplift our expertise and break new ground, as we fly the Singapore flag high on the world stage. SGGA will retain a core element of SGG - uniting the local community through events, celebrating local games and offering our talent a friendly, nurturing home to explore, grow and connect with potential collaborators - and offer more. We look forward to nurturing a more resilient and innovative industry with sustained growth and opportunities through infrastructure and capabilities building,” said Gwen.
Boosting Singapore’s gaming and esports industry: Resilient, Innovative, Talented
In Q3 2020, SGGA will launch its paid membership programme, which is open to all companies registered in Singapore, as well as Singapore-based individuals including freelancers. Association members will enjoy special rates and access to SGGA initiatives, including local and overseas event participation, focus groups, networking opportunities, resources, training courses and benefits through SGGA’s partner network.
The Association is also seeking patrons who are keen to contribute to industry initiatives and volunteers across multiple roles. More information can be found on the SGGA website.
As part of its goal to build a steady pipeline of talent for the industry, SGGA will curate and organise more than ten workshops across a range of topics including gaming, esports and business management for startups in its first year. Other initiatives include engaging with educational institutions, SMEs and corporations to facilitate training and hiring of talent, addressing misconceptions about gaming and esports, and raising awareness on the career opportunities in the games industry.
“The SGGA’s goal is to engage with and represent the full spectrum of Singapore’s gaming and esports ecosystem, which although small, is diverse. Each Exco member and appointed advisor brings valuable expertise and perspective unique to their roles in the industry, and this will equip us with the knowledge needed to address gaps and create more opportunities for our companies to grow and succeed,” said Elicia.
SGGA also aims to be a platform for thought leadership for the industry, by connecting companies with the latest gaming policies and trends related to the local and Asian markets. Insight reports will be provided to companies to leverage on, for picking up best practices and staying abreast of the latest developments.
Increasing accessibility to esports, developing a Southeast Asian Esports Hub
The SGGA announced the “Singapore Esports” initiative to celebrate achievements of the Singaporean esports community; and improve Singapore’s appeal as a host for esports events by establishing industry-wide standards.
A key focus is to increase accessibility to esports through:
- Supporting esports events and networking conferences;
- Raising industry standards through training and accreditation;
- Showcasing achievements of local businesses and talent in the industry.
The initiative will seek to boost the visibility of Singapore as a Southeast Asian esports hub and position Singapore esports enterprises as credible partners for international companies and organisations keen to host esports events in Asia.
The first local public directory for all esports-related services will be created to boost the visibility of the companies as well as available job opportunities. The directory, hosted on the association’s website, will be available on a later date. Training programmes and internships will be curated to boost capabilities to develop local talent to meet global demands.
“Esports is a new and growing industry with massive potential. The end goal is to create the right environment for a prosperous and sustainable ecosystem in Singapore for our esports businesses and all stakeholders to thrive in. This initiative is the first step towards it with a key focus on shaping perceptions and changing mindsets while laying the foundations for industry standards,” said Jayf, Exco member of SGGA, and CEO & Founder of one of Singapore’s largest esports team, Resurgence.
Eyes on the Global Market
SGGA will be a command centre to identify and spark collaborations, and showcase Singapore’s gaming industry expertise on overseas platforms. A strategic partnership with gamescom asia will seek to showcase Singapore gaming and esports companies, starting with the digital version of Gamescom 2020, and plan for a significant presence at gamescom asia 2021. The SGGA will continue to build upon existing partnerships with other gaming and esports associations and lead agencies, and plans to showcase Singapore companies at international events such as Taipei Game Show, Tokyo Game Show and Game Developers Conference (GDC) in 2021.
The association also announced its inaugural SGGA Industry Day, a digital conference on 7 and 8 August. With dedicated tracks on games development and esports in the local and regional scenes, participants can glean insights from and network with local and overseas experts, from understanding AAA games to the skillsets required to secure a job in the esports industry. More details on the Industry Day are available at Annex C https://bit.ly/
More details on SGGA, its initiatives and membership application are available at www.sgga.org.sg.
Annex A: SGGA’s Executive committee (Exco) and Advisory Board
SGGA is led by industry veterans Gwen Guo and Elicia Lee. The Exco also includes esports pioneers Cavin Koh, Director of Strategic Partnerships at Eliphant and Jayf Soh, CEO & Founder of one of Singapore’s largest esports team Resurgence. They will work together with Brian Kwek, owner of indie games publisher Ysbryd Games; Emmanuel Yao, Associate Director of Production Services at Ubisoft Singapore; and Karen Teo, Vice President of APAC Global Business Group at Facebook, to chart SGGA’s direction and plans.
An advisory board with 17 representatives across AAA and local gaming studios, esports companies, global technology corporations and hardware brands have lent their industry expertise to support SGGA’s Exco team.
Annex B: Quotes from Supporting Agencies and Partners
Enterprise Singapore (ESG)
“The launch of SGGA is a new milestone for the local gaming and esports industry. Its initiatives such as the “Singapore Esports” umbrella brand and capability development workshops will help to drive the development of globally competitive gaming and esports companies. Through SGGA, Enterprise Singapore hopes to support the building and scaling of Singapore companies, which will in turn contribute to the overall development of the industry. Together, when we sharpen Singapore’s competitive advantage as a regional hub for gaming and esports, our companies will benefit from the international networks to become even stronger.” - Ms Kee Ai Nah, Executive Director, Lifestyle & Consumer, ESG.
Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA)
“We are excited at the formation of Singapore’s primary trade association for the games industry, which will play a crucial role in our efforts to emerge stronger in the post-COVID world. SGGA’s initiatives will help open up new business opportunities for our local games and esports companies in the burgeoning global games market. This professional platform will enable the industry to share expertise, foster cooperation and connect our local games professionals with international players, building the industry’s resilience for a digital future.” - Mr Howie Lau, Assistant Chief Executive, Media & Innovation, IMDA.
Singapore Tourism Board (STB)
“Esports is fast gaining traction and momentum globally, with best-in-class esports events increasingly becoming a motivation for travel. The launch of SGGA is an important milestone, and SGGA will be a key strategic partner in supporting Singapore’s ambition to be the premier gaming and esports events hub in the Southeast Asian region, by raising the profile of our local gaming industry and highlighting Singapore’s strengths in hosting world-class events such as gamescom asia.” - Ms Jean Ng, Executive Director, Attractions, Entertainment & Tourism Concept Development, STB.
Koelnmesse Singapore (Organisers of gamescom asia)
“It is very encouraging to see government support of Singapore’s video games industry. The role of a primary trade association like SGGA plays a big part in representation and uniting the local professional community. Not only do they act as a legitimate go-between to secure much-needed funding for members, they also help to advocate for the industry at all levels by taking active roles in promoting made-in-Singapore games at global events like gamescom and gamescom asia, supporting the development of local talent, and being a collective voice for the whole ecosystem.” - Mr Mathias Kuepper, Managing Director of Koelnmesse Singapore.
Annex C: About SGGA’s Industry Day 2020
The Association has been organising its Industry Day since 2018, as SGG’s annual event to promote knowledge sharing and networking among the game development community. This year’s edition, organised by the new SGGA, will be held online for the first time and also expands its scope to include esports.
To be held on 7 and 8 August 2020, the event targets students and graduates who are keen to better understand the gaming and esports industry, as well as aspiring industry professionals. The two-day programme includes keynote addresses by overseas and local industry experts, panel discussions, and a showcase of local students’ work in games development.
Key highlights of Industry Day 2020 include:
- Game development:
- Triple-A Games companies - Southeast Asia to Overseas
- Being an artist in Games Development
- The role of Facebook in SEA’s Esports Scene
- Insights on how esports teams pick players
- What skills are needed to secure a job in esports
- Showcase by budding game developers in Singapore
The event is free. For details, registration and updates: https://bit.ly/