Razer is spending S$10 million on Singapore’s e-sports scene partly so CEO Min-Liang Tan can troll a naysayer

Razer chief Min-Liang Tan pledges to spend S$10m to grow Singapore’s e-sports scene over the next 12 months.

Gamers rejoice, your time has come. 

Razer chief Min-Liang Tan has committed to spending S$10 million (US$7.2 million) over the next 12 months to grow Singapore’s e-sports scene – and it’s all thanks to a naysayer who said gaming “isn’t a sport by definition”. 

The member of the public, identified only as Julianna Foo, had written in to The Straits Times on the topic of e-sports being included as a part of the upcoming SEA Games. In her letter, published by The Straits Times on Friday (September 6), Foo said that the inclusion was “difficult to accept”.

“Athletes train rigorously, abide by a strict diet and hone their physical prowess to compete face to face with the best in their chosen field. Gaming falls short in these aspects,” she wrote. 

In a Facebook post on the same day, Tan responded to the letter saying that e-sports  “requires a huge amount of physical and mental commitment” and that the “prize purses for e-sports now dwarfs that of many traditional sports”.

Then on Monday, Tan announced on Facebook that his company will be spending a total of S$10 million to fund gaming and e-sports activities in Singapore. This will include supporting Singapore’s e-sports teams and investing in e-sports companies in Singapore or founded by Singaporeans, he said.

The funding will also will also be used for Team Singapore’s representatives at the SEA Games, which Razer is the official e-sports partner for. 

And while he explained that the funding was his way of giving back to Singapore, Tan added a cheeky post scriptum at the end of his post to say that the funding was also partly an effort to troll Foo for her comments on gaming. 

While he founded Razer in the United States, Tan, a Singaporean, said in the post that he was still committed to the development of Singapore, where the company has 500 employees and a new Southeast Asian headquarters being built at one-north.

“We are one of the largest e-sports brands in the world, and personally as a Singaporean, I’m looking forward to giving back and doing more for my country,” he wrote.

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