×

Tencent Loses $14 Billion After Criticism From Chinese Media

Chinese media and technology giant Tencent suffered a dramatic loss of $14 billion on the Hong Kong stock exchange Tuesday after heavy-handed criticism from the Communist Party mouthpiece People’s Daily, which slammed the company’s hugely popular online game “King of Glory” as being “poison” to young people.

In a demonstration of the power of China’s state-run media and propaganda machine, the People’s Daily online edition posted its condemnation of “King of Glory” twice on Tuesday, once in the morning, then again in the afternoon. The result was a 4.1% fall in Tencent’s share price to HK$269.20 ($34.48) when the market closed, a loss in value of HK$109 billion. The loss fueled a 1.5% drop in the Hang Seng Index as a whole.

“King of Glory” (also known as “Honor of Kings” and “Strike of Kings”) is a multi-player online battle game owned by Tencent Games. It boasts more than 80 million users, according to the People’s Daily.

The newspaper criticized the game for spreading negative messages and energy, “ruining the lives” of players, particularly young people born after 2000, who account for 20% of the players.

“First, the game’s content is a twist of values and historical views. Second, young people’s minds and bodies are consumed by their indulgence in the game,” the People’s Daily wrote on its website. “From the government’s perspective, we need innovation, but we have greater needs for monitoring.”

Tencent hit back in a Weibo post quoting “King of Glory” producer Lin Min, who insisted that the game’s design fully complied with government requirements. “Just like other forms of entertainment, games can be part of our normal daily lives. They are not opium for our minds,” Lin wrote.

Aside from the war of words between Tencent and the state media, the company’s China Literature – China’s largest online and e-book publishing company – filed for an IPO on Monday in Hong Kong to raise $800 million, Reuters reported. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley are among the sponsors of the offering.

Tencent owns a 62% stake in China Literature, which is the country’s answer to Amazon’s Kindle store.

More Biz

  • Spanish tenor Placido Domingo during the

    Opera Singer Plácido Domingo Hospitalized with Coronavirus

    Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo has been hospitalized in Acapulco, Mexico, for coronavirus. “He is doing well and is responding to treatment,” Domingo’s spokesperson told CNN on Sunday. On March 22, the 79-year-old Domingo revealed via his Facebook page that he had tested positive for COVID-19. “I beg everyone to be extremely careful, follow the basic [...]

  • Mergers and Deals Placeholder

    Tegna Confirms Two Acquisition Offers Withdrawn Amid Coronavirus Upheaval

    Tegna confirmed Sunday that two suitors for the station group have recently withdrawn acquisition offers, citing the upheaval in the broader marketplace caused by the coronavirus crisis. Tegna’s statement is the company’s first acknowledgement that it has received four unsolicited acquisition offers in recent weeks. Two of those have since been withdrawn while the other [...]

  • Prince Harry and Meghan Duchess of

    President Trump Says Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Must Pay for Own Security

    After moving to the U.S. and leaving the royal family behind, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle must now pay for their own security team, according to President Trump. Before recently relocating to the U.S., the couple had been living in Canada under the watch and protection of British security and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. [...]

  • Donald Trump Anthony Fauci

    Trump Boasts of Coronavirus TV Ratings as Fauci Warns: 200,000 People Could Die in U.S.

    UPDATE: President Donald Trump announced in a press conference Sunday afternoon that the country’s social distancing guidelines have been extended to April 30 and that the peak death rate will hit in two weeks. “Nothing would be worse than declaring victory before the victory has been won. Therefore we will be extending our guidelines to April [...]

  • Queen Elizabeth

    Queen Elizabeth's Footman Diagnosed with Coronavirus (Report)

    Coronavirus remains firmly in the royal orbit as one of Queen Elizabeth’s footmen has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19. The royal footman, who regularly walks the Queen’s dogs and was in regular contact with the monarch, is now in self-isolation after falling ill with coronavirus, according to British tabloid The Sun. The revelation comes just [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content