Razer plans to boost S'pore staff count to 1,000 by 2023 to support South-east Asia expansion

As part of Razer's hiring spree, new roles will be created for businesses the company is looking to strengthen. PHOTO: RAZER

SINGAPORE - Gaming technology company Razer plans to increase its staff strength here from 600 to about 1,000 by 2023, to give it an edge in businesses it is tapping, such as console gaming, cryptocurrencies and artificial intelligence (AI).

On Tuesday (Oct 26), the company's expansion in the region got a lift with the official opening of its $100 million South-east Asia headquarters in the one-north technology and business hub in Buona Vista.

Headquartered in California and co-founded by Singaporean chief executive officer Tan Min-Liang in 2005, Razer is known for its gaming accessories such as mice and keyboards.

But the Hong Kong-listed company has expanded into other products and services, including phones, laptops, tablets, gaming chairs and fintech.

Speaking at the building's opening on Tuesday, Mr Tan said one reason why the company doubled down on investments in Singapore is that the country is home for him.

"And it's not just about building the South-east Asian headquarters (in one-north) - it's looking at investing and building a Singaporean gaming and tech ecosystem... right here," he added.

Citing Razer's success, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, who spoke at the new headquarters' opening, encouraged other local firms to venture beyond Singapore.

Mr Heng, who is also Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies, noted that North America was Razer's primary market initially but it grew rapidly later.

Now, it has 18 offices and 150 million users globally, with its sights set on expanding in South-east Asia, which DPM Heng said has a growing middle class that has greater consumption power.

As part of Razer's hiring spree, new roles will be created for businesses the company is looking to strengthen - hardware as well as software and services.

For hardware, it is eyeing engineering talent for new growth categories, such as console gaming and gaming chairs.

For services, it is looking to employ people to enlarge its Razer Gold virtual currency offerings, which are used for buying video games and making purchases in games.

(From left) Razer CEO and co-founder Tan Min-Liang, EDB chairman Beh Swan Gin, DPM Heng Swee Keat and Razer global retail experience director Christine Cherel touring the showroom. ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

The expansion will be in new territories in South-east Asia as well as in Latin America and the Middle East.

The firm is also looking to hire for emerging digital services. These include AI, cryptocurrencies and the Internet of Things, which involves Web-connected devices.

To bolster the growth of e-sports in South-east Asia, Razer's regional headquarters will host workshops and training sessions to support local teams and talent.

The company, which was previously located in Chai Chee, was expected to move to Buona Vista last year. But construction that began in 2019 was delayed after Covid-19 hit last year.

Construction was completed in April this year and Razer moved in in August.

It will occupy three of the building's seven floors and the rest will be rented out. One key tenant is JustCo, which will take up one floor to roll out shared office spaces to technology and gaming companies, including start-ups.

The building, which Razer said is partially powered by renewable energy, has received the Building and Construction Authority's Green Mark GoldPlus certification.

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