NEXPLAY, a new esports ecosystem and technology company founded by Filipinos, plans to enter high-growth areas, including non-fungible tokens (NFT) and blockchain gaming, its president said.

“The games industry in the region and in the Philippines is at an inflection point,” Nexplay President and Co-Founder Miguel C. Bernas said in a statement e-mailed to reporters on Jan. 18.

“Aside from further expanding our esports ecosystem, we also plan to venture into the high-growth area of Web3.0, NFTs and blockchain gaming,” he added.

Web3.0 is the third generation of online services, while NFTs are non-interchangeable digital tokens that contain data proving ownership of items, mostly related to art, audio, video, and the like.

Southeast Asian countries lead in terms of NFT ownership, with the Philippines topping the list at 32%, according to the findings of an online survey released in November last year by Australian independent information service Finder.

The popularity of NFTs in the Philippines is mainly from in-game assets gained in play-to-earn games like Axie Infinity.

“In the same way that games leaped from arcades to the home, from desktop devices to mobile handsets and from offline to online, blockchain technology will be the next revolution in gaming,” Mr. Bernas also said.

Mr. Bernas, a veteran business executive, was recently named president and co-founder of the technology company.

He will “lead strategy and corporate governance, as well as spearhead fund raising as the company moves towards its Series A investment round,” Nexplay said.

“Already operationally profitable with revenues growing at 150% year on year, the exciting gaming tech startup is looking to bolster its esports ecosystem and enhance its professional esports teams and content creator offerings to brands and advertisers, it added. — Arjay L. Balinbin