Home/ Companies / Start-ups/  Gaming firm Nazara raises 100 crore from investors

NEW DELHI: After filing for an initial public offer (IPO) last month, Mumbai-based gaming startup Nazara Technologies Ltd has raised fresh funding of Rs100 crore from Instant Growth Limited (IGL), the investment vehicle of North America-based limited partners (LPs) of Hornbill Orchid India Fund.

This is the second big investment in an Indian gaming startup this month. Last week, Mobile Premier League (MPL) had raised funds of $95 million (about Rs692 crore).

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IGL was advised on the deal by Hornbill Capital Advisers LLP, an Indian investment advisory firm.

"We welcome Hornbill Capital’s entry into the Indian gaming ecosystem with their investment in Nazara. We are glad that they share our conviction and excitement on the future of the gaming sector in India and the value creation potential which gaming offers to the investors," Manish Agarwal, chief executive, Nazara said in a statement.

The size of the investment by IGL makes it one of the biggest fundings raised by Nazara in recent years. The company had previously raised Rs327 crore in November 2017 from IIFL Special Opportunities Fund and 182 crore in December 2017 from billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala.

In January, Nazara had filed a Draft Red Herring Prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Board of India. Also, in January, Plutus Wealth Management and associates acquired shares worth more than Rs500 crore in Nazara from WestBridge Ventures II Investment Holdings, facilitating their exit from the gaming company.

"We have been closely following Nazara's journey over several years, as it evolved into a platform for gaming and gamified early learning," Manoj Thakur, founder and managing partner, Hornbill Capital Advisers LLP, said in a statement.

"Through prudent capital allocation, we believe that the team at Nazara has demonstrated their ability to build a formidable presence in esports, gamified early learning and mobile gaming – some of the most exciting spaces in India over the next decade," Thakur added.

Nazara is one of the leading gaming companies in India with stakes in mobile gaming, eSports and sports media. The company has majority stakes in eSports startup NODWIN Gaming (57.05%), eSports media firm Sportskeeda (63.9%) and game developers Next Wave Multimedia Pvt. Ltd. (52.38%), known for cricket game franchise World Cricket Championship (WCC).

In the last five years, the company has invested over Rs300 crore in Indian gaming ecosystem.

Gaming companies in India have reported unprecedented growth since pandemic started in the form of new users, greater engagement, and time and money spent on gaming.

This has also fuelled large investments into Indian gaming companies.

Abhijit Ahaskar
Abhijit writes on tech policy, gaming, security, AI, robotics, electronics and startups. He has been in the media industry for over 12 years.
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Updated: 09 Feb 2021, 05:02 PM IST
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