Delhi-based mobile gaming company Octro has raised $15 million (around Rs 89 crore) in its first round of institutional funding from venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, according to a report by The Times of India.
"With the smartphone penetration in India likely to grow to 500 million from the current 100 million, a big opportunity lies in the mobile gaming platform that can shore up its user base rapidly," Mohit Bhatnagar, MD at Sequoia Capital, told TOI.
"A player like Octro has the opportunity to get as many as 100 million smartphone users on board in the years to come with a ready back-end and the popularity of multi-player experience," he added.
Founded in 2006 by Saurabh Aggarwal (CEO), Octro is the creator of popular games like Teen Patti and Rummy. The company primarily develops only multi-player games, and claims to have a daily active user base of around two million. Similar to most of its international counterparts, the company also plans to sell virtual goods to monetise its platform going forward.
"We are in the top five downloaded games across multiple categories on Google Play. The key for us has been our technology platform that allows for fast gameplay. We are making culturally relevant games for the Indian gamer across all platforms, be it mobile, web or for social media channels like Facebook," said Octro's founder and CEO Saurabh Aggarwal.
The mobile games and apps market together is estimated to be worth Rs 2,700 crore by 2016, according to a report by investment bank Avendus Capital. Sequoia is betting big on mobile gaming, riding on the country's rapidly growing smartphones market, as well as the fact that games account for the largest chunk of the app market.
In India, Octro faces competition from existing mobile gaming players like Nazara (Sequoia had earlier invested in the company), Disney UTV, Hungama and Zapak.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)