Gaming start-up MPL raised $35.5 million from Sequoia, & others

MPL’s latest funding round also comes at a time when fantasy gaming start-ups have been mopping up large rounds from tech investors in India and abroad.

Bengaluru: Mobile Premier League (MPL), a mobile-focused eSports gaming platform based out of Bengaluru today announced a Series A investment of $35.5 million led by Sequoia India, Times Internet, and GoVentures.

Other investors including RTP Global, BeeNext, Base Growth, and Venture Highway also participated in the current round, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

MPL, which is owned by Galactus Funware Technology Pvt. Ltd., will use the current funding to for driving product marketing and user growth efforts in India.

Launched in September last year, MPL 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.

MPL was co-founded by ex-Zynga executive Sai Srinivas Kiran, and Shubh Malhotra. Both Malhotra and Kiran earlier co-founded CREO, a hardware start-up that was acquired by Hike Messenger in 2017.

Currently the MPL platform claims to have over 25 million registered signups across both Andorid and iOS. A large part of MPL’s user base is from non-metro cities, according to the company’s chief executive Sai Srinivas Kiran.

Kiran also told Mint that MPL will expand its gaming categories in the coming months. “While we were developing the MPL gaming platform, we were not only just focused on India. We want to expand to other geographies as well as usage picks up,” added Kiran over a phone interview.

Speaking on monetization plans, Kiran said that the platform will charge users to take part in online tournaments, as well as through brand sponsorships.

“Our goal is to build India’s largest Mobile eSports Platform which is accessible to all. MPL today provides users access to all formats and types of competitive games. Like with everything else, competitive gaming in India will be mobile first and MPL wants to be the platform of choice for the user” added Kiran in a statement.

“Sequoia India is very happy to back Sai and Shubh a second time, and believe solidly in their vision of creating the largest esports platform for India and other emerging markets. With their industry leading growth and engagement metrics, MPL has the potential to become a major mobile internet company in India ” said Shailendra Singh, managing director, Sequoia Capital India in a statement.

MPL’s latest funding round also comes at a time when fantasy gaming start-ups have been mopping up large rounds from tech investors in India and abroad. Mumbai-based fantasy gaming PORTAL Dream 11 had raised around $100 million from China’s Tencent in September last year.

Delhi-based GamingMonk had also secured seed funding from investors like Rajan Anandan and Stellaris Venture Partners in the past.

Another start-up HalaPlay had secured $5 million from Indian game developer Nazara Technologies, and casino gaming company Delta Corp in March this year.

[“source=livemint”]