Sahaj Gaming, a budding gaming start-up, has successfully raised pre-seed funding, with Antler India leading the investment. Notably, the company’s recently launched beta version of the game 1ludo has garnered significant attention, boasting an impressive 25,000 pre-registrations.
The game is currently available for pre-registration on the Google Play store and is slated to go live shortly. Sahaj Gaming has plans to introduce the real-money gaming (RMG) variant shortly after the initial free-to-play release on the Google Play Store.
Founded by industry veterans Deepak Saini and Rahul Bantiya, Sahaj Gaming aims to create a portfolio of games deeply rooted in Indian culture. The envisioned suite includes popular games such as Ludo, Snakes and Ladders, Tambola, and Checkers, catering to the diverse gaming preferences of Indian audiences.
Deepak Saini, CEO and Founder of Sahaj Gaming stressed the rich cultural history of board games in India. He said in an interview with Outlook India, “Popular board games like Ludo, Chess, Snakes, and Ladders, and Checkers are modern iterations of their ancient counterparts dating back thousands of years.” Saini added that Sahaj Gaming leverages a profound understanding of game design and player psychology to transform these traditional games into skill-based tournaments, ensuring their relevance in the modern global gaming landscape.
Rahul Bantiya, co-founder and CMO of Sahaj Gaming highlighted the extensive opportunities within the gaming industry. He noted, “Gaming is set to become bigger than music, movies, and television shows combined and has started growing rapidly in India over the last decade.” Bantiya expressed optimism about the industry’s potential, citing a current market valuation of ₹25,000 crores, expected to triple by 2030. With over 50 crore gamers in India, Sahaj Gaming aspires to establish itself as a gaming powerhouse catering to millions of gamers globally.
Antler, a global early-stage venture capital firm, led the pre-seed funding round for Sahaj Gaming. Despite recent changes in taxation for the gaming industry, Rajiv Srivatsa, Partner at Antler in India, expressed confidence in the gaming opportunity in India. He lauded the experience of Deepak and Rahul in building and scaling beloved games in India and conveyed excitement about partnering with Sahaj Gaming as they pursue global ambitions.
Antler, founded in Singapore in 2017, has invested in over 1000 companies globally and maintains offices across major entrepreneurial hubs worldwide.