In a recent development, Krafton Inc’s chief executive revealed that they are willing to spend $100 million or more this year on Indian startups. The South Korean game development company is recognized for its globally celebrated multiplayer battle royale game PlayersUnknown Battlegrounds (PUBG).
Notably, their popularity took a hit when India banned their gaming app in 2020 in a drive to weed out Chinese apps from the Indian smartphone ecosystem amid ongoing political distress and border hostilities with China. Since India was one of the biggest consumers in the battle royale segment, Krafton developed Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI), especially targeting the Indian audience, and launched it in 2021.
After the success of BGMI, which has garnered over 100 million registered users, Krafton invested $100 million across several startups including Pratilipi, Nodwin Gaming, and Kuku FM, in a bid to strengthen their hold in the Indian market. Krafton Inc chief executive Changhan Kim revealed that they are actively looking at the Indian startups and are willing to fork out $100 million or even more for the growth of the company in the IP, media, and entertainment sectors.
“While BGMI is performing well in India, we are also focused on the IP, media, and entertainment sector as a whole for holistic growth. We expect that overall investments in the rest of 2022 and next year will be equal to or larger than $100 million. We also think that it’s a good chance to score good deals in this market,” Kim mentioned in a chat with Economic Times.
Krafton won’t be diving into the P2E games sector
Kim also spoke about recent hot topics like NFTs, metaverse, and VR games, as his company is exploring the idea of Web3 gaming but is not solely focusing on that. The Indian gaming sector has witnessed the emergence of Nazara Technologies, Fancraze, and Radio, which are making inroads in the Web3 gaming arena and NFT environment. He was also dismissive about the idea of playing to earn games like Axle Infinity which has disrupted the gaming industry and has drawn several startups to the Web3 gaming segment.
“People are talking a lot about the P2E concept. But that is not the direction that Krafton will take. Games should be fun to play, not a thing to do to earn something. We think that there are certain areas where game production technologies can have synergistic effects with Web3 technologies. Lots of gaming companies have their own idea about it, in terms of interoperability, I think will take a long time to get there,” Kim added.
Krafton posted $405.7 million in quarterly revenue, according to the consolidated financial statements of the company for the first quarter of 2022.