Alibaba Group Holding has registered a new company in Beijing named Yuanjing Shengsheng to test the gaming potential of the metaverse, in the latest sign that China’s Big Tech firms are doubling down on what many see as the future of the internet.
The new unit, wholly owned by Alibaba’s investment arm, has listed its major business as software development and services, according to public registry tracking firm Tianyancha. It has 10 million yuan (US$1.6 million) in registered capital. The unit’s business is related to the metaverse, according to a report by Chinese media outlet Chinastarmarket.cn, citing unnamed Alibaba employees.
The establishment of the new unit underlines Alibaba’s interest in the metaverse, a shared, immersive 3D virtual space where people can interact and trade, and the move comes despite Beijing’s tighter scrutiny of the gaming sector in the past year. It also comes hot on the heels of similar forays into the metaverse by other Chinese tech giants, including Tencent Holdings, NetEase and Baidu.