KSA based Nine66, a Savvy Games Group company and South Korean Blockchain game developer Wemade jointly participate in the first edition of University Gamedev League which finals will be held in Riyadh KSA.

The University Gamedev League is a competition for university student game developers from across the world. Over 50 teams from 30 universities and 10 countries have registered to participate in the five-month contest. The initiative provides a unique opportunity for aspiring game developers to showcase their talents, collaborate with others, network, and receive mentorships from globally recognized gaming experts.

The top two teams will fly to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, to compete in the final held during Gamers8, an esports tournament and gaming festival which runs for eight weeks and previously gathered over 1.5 million visitors in 2022.

This partnership comes after the two entities signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Wemade and Nine66 and is in line with both parties’ ambitions for the gaming industry in Saudi Arabia. The middle east gaming market is also expected to grow by 56% to $2.79 billion by 2026, with Saudi Arabia’s 21 million gamers constituting an untapped demographic, according to analysts at Niko Partners

In an effort to become the next global hub for the gaming industry, Savvy Games Group is investing $38 billion into the gaming sector. Wemade is intensifying its effort to develop the booming gaming ecosystem in Saudi Arabia and increase its local presence by participating in this initiative. It is also the first Korean company to sponsor the competition. Through its role, Wemade will facilitate knowledge transfer and skills building for the new generation of game developers combining blockchain technology within the Saudi Arabian gaming ecosystem.

WEMADE, the South Korean game developer shifting to blockchain NFTs, DeFi and metaverse has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with KSA based Nine66, a Savvy Games Group (“Savvy”) company, to drive the development of the gaming industry in Saudi Arabia.

Savvy’s long-term objective is to drive the long-term growth and development of the games and e-sports sectors in Saudi Arabia. The group consists of five independent entities covering areas such as game development, e-sports, investments and more.

KSA based Nine66 is committed to building and investing in the thriving gaming ecosystem in Saudi Arabia. Nine66 is driving growth and success in the region’s gaming industry through a range of initiatives and partnerships, such as publishing, incubator and accelerator programs, training and events, as well as supporting virtual and real-life game development communities.

Saudi Arabia is a strong foothold in the Middle East’s gaming market, with over 80% of its 36 million population identifying as gamers. The partnership between WEMADE and Nine66 will support the local gaming ecosystem through training and educating Saudi game developers. 

Additionally, the partnership will explore various programs aimed at knowledge transfer, sponsorship of regional events, and expanding networks in the region to help grow the Saudi gaming industry and create new opportunities for developers and gamers alike.

WEMADE recently launched its new flagship game MIR M Global on January 31, which currently tops the ranks of video games in RPG category in multiple Middle Eastern countries including Saudi Arabia. 

Furthermore, in January 2023, WEMADE announced the establishment of a subsidiary in Abu Dhabi in the UAE, another gaming hub and plans to open another branch in MENA region and work with local projects and companies.

The announcement comes at a time when KSA will be hosting for the first time the Web3 Delight Summit in Riyadh KSA on March 6th 2023 at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center.

The event, which aims to engage, empower, and support a proactive, customised, collaborative, and secure advanced economy, will be attended by over 3,000 people in person and online from more than 40 countries.