A few hours ago, Donald Trump, president of the United States, signed an executive order in which he indicated that, as of September 20, 2020, no American company could carry out commercial deals with ByteDance and Tencent. Many thought that this would affect companies such as Epic Games or Riot Games, which are owned by Tencent; however, it will not.
"I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, find that additional steps must be taken to deal with the national emergency with respect to the information and communications technology and services supply chain declared in Executive Order 13873 of May 15, 2019 (Securing the Information and Communications Technology and Services Supply Chain). As I explained in an Executive Order of August 6, 2020 (Addressing the Threat Posed by Tiktok, and Taking Additional Steps to Address the National Emergency With Respect to the Information and Communications Technology and Services Supply Chain), the spread in the United States of mobile applications developed and owned by companies in the People’s Republic of China (China) continues to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States. To protect our Nation, I took action to address the threat posed by one mobile application, TikTok. Further action is needed to address a similar threat posed by another mobile application, WeChat."
WeChat is not the only software related company whose activities reach the United States and the world. The giant gaming company, Tencent, which owns both Riot Games and Epic, could perfectly be targeted by an executive order by president Trump. Fortunately this is not the case.
The White House Office confirmed to the LA Times that the executive order will only affect transactions related to WeChat. Thus, companies like Epic Games and Riot Games are safe from the consequences of this executive order.
“Video game companies owned by Tencent will NOT be affected by this executive order. White House official confirmed to the LA Times that the EO only blocks transactions related to WeChat, ”said Sam Dean, a journalist for the LA Times. "So Riot Games (League of Legends), Epic Games (Fortnite), et al are safe."
Undoubtedly, what the LA Times reported will leave many members of the industry to rest easy. After all, the way the executive order is worded made it appear that the above would apply to Tencent and all of its subsidiaries.
If so, the above would have been a real headache. The foregoing since different US companies would have been prohibited from doing business with Epic Games, Riot Games or Activision Blizzard.
As of now League of Legends players and community can rest easy, as said before, the last executive order does not affect Tencent (and therefore Riot Games), but this doesn't close the door for a EO in the future. Nevertheless this is unlikely to happen as this would cause quite a lot of problems related to american projects or companies working with Tencent.