The COO of SEAGM, Tommy Chieng recently spoke to Sin Chew’s Pocketimes regarding the company’s present and future. Besides sharing about the company, he also added his insights regarding the gaming and esports industry.
Esports creating jobs
Pocketimes pointed out that despite esports being a global trend, it’s still relatively new in Malaysia. Regardless of the scene being fresh, KBS has recently established a 5-10 year esports development plan. They then pointed out that SEAGM, however, has been in the industry for over ten years and further inquired about Tommy’s tought on the esports industry.
According the COO, esports is frequently talked about but most are not aware of what goes on behind the scenes. He added that the industry has created many job opportunities for gamers and non-gamers alike. For instance, a team would require a team manager and a coach. Besides that, they would also need someone to manage and run their social media account to interact with the fans. So this also means editors, videographers and writers are needed as well to produce content.
SEAGM’s role in esports
Even though the industry is ripe with opportunities, it is not without flaws, Tommy added. He gave an example regarding professional players’ salary. Some are earning as low as RM 500 monthly. This makes it hard for them to survive since training for tournament demands their full-time, it’s not something they can do part-time.
Many people are unaware of the pay professional players get when they are starting out despite having to train for long hours per day and attend tournaments in various places.Tommy Chieng, Coo of SEAGM
In an effort to ease these players’ burden, SEAGM have been offering sponsorship to several team. Currently we have on board the PUBG Mobile Professional League SEA champion, Yoodo Gank and SEAGM.WULF.
Besides sponsorship, SEAGM is also looking into more collaboration opportunities to enrich the industry, especially academically.
SEAGM and employee welfare
Apart from business ventures, SEAGM is also looking out for their staff’s well-being. Tommy shared about SEAGM’s 3F program, an initiative the company has been running for two years. 3F represent Fitness, Family and Finance.
In terms of getting staff fit and healthy, SEAGM provide subsidy for staff in any health related activities such as gym membership and yearly check up.
Every three months, employees get to enjoy RM 100 subsidy to spend time with their family. It could be a trip or just a meal as long as they do it together with their family members.
As for finance, SEAGM is looking to support their senior staffs in terms of house purchase via down payment assistance. The company also wants to assist in early childhood education expenses. This last branch of the initiative, however, is still in the planning phase.
Getting a cut of the e-commerce pie
E-Commerce is without a doubt a blooming and growing industry. According to Google TEMASEK 2019 SEA economy report, e-commerce market share in Malaysia was nearly 42%. Pocketimes asked Tommy how SEAGM stands out against in this competitive industry.
SEAGM is a digital goods business, and according to the COO, doesn’t have to worry too much about logistic problems like others do. With that, the company’s focus is aimed at providing excellent services to customers. For example, the company’s support service has a record time of 30 seconds when it comes to response time.
We prioritize service experience of the customers.Tommy Chieng, Coo of SEAGM
Customer service is crucial to SEAGM since its’ target audience, in majority, are gamers. Their purchase behavior tends to favor immediate completion of their transactions. Subsequently with this information, SEAGM then position its brand as a service provider platform instead.
Adapting and growing for the future
SEAGM having been in the market for more than 10 years, is growing and adapting to the fast changing trends as well. Three years ago, Tommy had a goal of hitting 500 million annual revenues. In 2019, the company achieved 80% of this goal. Tommy is confident of reaching said goal in 2020 with the company currently having a 2 million large user base.
Expanding beyond just providing gaming products, Tommy is also looking into other services that gamers would use. SEAGM is planning to expand in such directions. Take for instance, a gamer attending a tournament overseas would require flight and accommodation. In the future, the company would like to work with other brands to build an ecosystem for the industry.
You can watch the full interview here on Pocketimes, in Mandarin.