Biz / Tech

Wanyoo targets 'eSports capital' Shanghai to open 30 hotels dedicated for players this year

Zhu Shenshen
The hotels will be specifically designed for gaming, offer high-end graphics cards and have upgraded digital entertainment facilities
Zhu Shenshen

Wanyoo, the operator of China's biggest chain of Internet cafés, plans to open 30 eSports hotels in Shanghai by end of this year, targeting the city as a global "eSports capital" with upgraded digital entertainment facilities. 

The eSports hotels, with specific designs for gaming and computers equipped with Nvidia's high-end graphic cards, will provide new gaming experiences for fans.

Nvidia will offer an advanced supply of graphic cards, despite supply shortage challenges, said David Zhang, Nvidia China's general manager of Consumer Business.

Wanyoo, which has opened three eSports hotels in Shanghai, features gaming computers with latest graphic cards and other hardware as part of its bed, shower and hotel services. It will open a flagship eSports hotel soon in Shanghai and take the total number to 30 in the city in 2021, said Dong Yinming, Wanyoo's CEO.

"The business needs the power of brand and economies of scale. Fortunately, we have both," said Dong.

Wanyoo has 1,000 Internet café outlets globally, and over 16 million members. Its major customers are male players aged between 18 and 35, the same target users for the eSports hotels.

The current eSports hotels, which cost about 400 yuan (US$62) a night, are "full" every day. Wanyoo's return on investment period for an eSports hotel is about 30 months, compared with four or five years for a normal hotel, said Dong.

Shanghai's strategy to develop the city as "global eSports capital" may fuel Wanyoo's business.

The city has taken measures to support the eSports industry, such as increasing the number of venues, holding top events, and setting up eSports majors in colleges. 

Some of the city's major competition organizers and eSports enterprises have received government subsidies. The application and approval procedures for eSports-related publications are also being accelerated.

Nvidia, the world's biggest graphic computing firm, will ensure supply for Internet café firms like Wanyoo as its latest products, like RTX 3070 and 3080, can reach more people through vertical industry, Zhang said.

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