FanPlay, online gaming start-up, raises $1.2M in pre-Series A round

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With acquisitions, mergers, and deal-making in the space picking up, online gaming startup FanPlay has raised $1.2 million in a pre-Series A round led by Upsparks, with participation from CRED Founder Kunal Shah, Goodwater Capital, LetsVenture, Atrium Angels, IIM-Indore Angel Fund, and other angel investors.

FanPlay, founded in 2020, will leverage these funds to further broaden its product offerings and integrate more game formats on its platform.

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Speaking on the funding round, Mohamad Faraz, Co-founder, Upsparks said, “The gaming industry in India is thriving, and the pandemic has accelerated the popularity of mobile games. FanPlay founder’s vision and execution capabilities will help it to become the largest real money gaming platform in India. We believe that it’s games and social experience will resonate with many Indians and help fans build relationships with the creators. The company is backed by Y Combinator and other marquee investors is a testimony to our belief in it and the disruption it is bringing in the social gaming space. We thereby take immense pride in backing the firm to help reach its future goals.”

FanPlay organizes live games hosted by content creators and social media celebrities on its platform Since its inception in 2020, the startup has been able to retain more than 60% of its creators on its platform. Over the past year, the startup is also becoming a buzz amongst several Indians who are utilizing their platform to play games and connect with their families and friends online.

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The Y Combinator-funded startup is aiming to double the number of creators and users by the end of FY22.

Dubbing Indian gaming industry as one of the fastest-growing segments in the world, Sunitha Ramaswamy, President, Early Stage, LetsVenture, said,  “With the online gaming segment having a strong foothold within the entertainment industry, it will further see a rise with the segment growing across. This will indeed give a major boost to the Indian economy.”

The favorable environment in the country towards online gaming, especially in the wake of recent rulings, has led to the fantasy gaming platform Dream11 now being pegged at $8.5 billion, up from $5 billion as reported by Entrackr. 

Earlier, gaming major Nazara Technologies announced the acquisition of OpenPlay Technologies, a platform that operates rummy-based games, for Rs 186.4 crore in cash and stock.

On the other hand, Mobile Premier League, offering 60 games that include fantasy sports and rummy on its platform, has doubled its valuation to $945 million.

According to industry experts, recent court rulings are driving investor confidence in India’s online gaming sector.