Times Internet, Sequoia India and Go-Ventures, the investment arm of ride-hailing startup Go-Jek, have led a USD 35.5 million round in Indian mobile gaming company Mobile Premier League (MPL). Other investors include RTP Global, BeeNext, Base Growth and Venture Highway.
MPL, which was launched in September last year, will used the funds to invest in product and user growth in India. The startup had raised USD 5 million in October as part of its Series-A round at a USD 12-13 million valuation. After the latest funding, its valuation stands at USD 150 million, a source told Economic Times.
MPL claims to have more than 25 million app installs. It provides a platform for mobile gamers, focused on gaming genres like arcade, skill-based/puzzle, adventure games, sports and others. It also hosts multiplayer tournaments on its platform along with cash prizes. It now hosts 25 gaming developers on its platform, which it plans to expand to 100 by the end of the year and launch in global markets.
Sai Srinivas Kiran G and Shubham Malhotra founded the company last year after selling their startup Creo to messaging app Hike. Kiran told ET, “Our goal is to be a global platform where any user can choose a game and play tournaments, and at the same time build infrastructure and distribution to enable the gaming developer community."
According to a report by Google-KPMG the online gaming industry in India, which is now pegged at USD 290 million, is expected to grow to USD 1 billion by 2021. Low-cost smartphones, increase in the domestic game developer base and focus on local content with themes is expected to drive this growth.
Recently, the Mumbai-based gaming startup Dream 11 joined India's unicorn club, the first for a gaming company in the country, after an investment from Steadview Capital in the range of USD 60 million.