K11 is a mall-museum hybrid concept created as a separate company within the Chinese real-estate firm New World Development. Founded in 2008 by Adrian Cheng, heir to billionaire Cheng Yu-tung, each exhibit houses work from local artists and acts as a venue for performance art, which visitors are welcome to interact with. K11 brings together the interactive and engaging nature of a shopping mall with the captivating beauty of an art exhibit.
In 2018, K11 incorporated Oben's avatar technology so that Cheng or an artist or celebrity can introduce a show and make it more interactive. It also hosted its first esports competition at its Hong Kong location. At the same time, the art mall staged an exhibition on gaming consoles and video games and their connection to popular culture. Together, this brought together the gaming community into K11's real-world space. The company plans to add more esports across its art malls over the next few years. Another new interactive component came from investing in and building out physical spaces for DayDayCook, China’s largest digital cooking channel. In its Shanghai and Guangzhou locations, DayDayCook is filled with young adults learning and cooking together, porting an online network into an offline experience.
In addition, K11 is embracing environmental consciousness. The spaces also incorporate what the company calls a “garden concept” and are equipped with local plants, vertical greening, urban farming, and a green roof, all meant to not only reduce harm to the local environment but also to emphasize the connection between people and their surrounding environment.
K11 is itself made up of several divisions. In addition to the art malls, K11 also has Atelier, which develops office buildings; Artus, which are luxury residences; a charitable art foundation; as well as its own investment arm, which is focused mostly on AI and how it can be applied to augment real-world experiences and the K11 Chinese Millennials Taskforce, which is a research arm.