WinZo, an Indian vernacular mobile gaming platform has announced the third edition of its flagship Game Developer Fund with the largest ever corpus of $20 million. The company is looking to invest across all games, economies around gaming, content creation, live-ops, and security.
WinZO aims to collaborate with the companies working in these areas through Capital investment, infrastructural support and monetization support. This comes six months after the gaming start-up raised series-C funding of $65 million led by California based Griffin Gaming Partners and existing investors; Maker’s Fund, and Courtside.
The platform partners with gaming studios and game developers globally to offer these games across multiple multiplayer formats. It had earlier announced a fund of $1.5 million in July 2019. The second fund of $5 million was announced in November last year and received over 500 applications of which around 70 games were selected.
What is on the plate
Of all the 70 games that were selected WinZO made investments in the range of $100,000-$500,000 in each of the partnerships varying from concept stage to near completion stage in the product life cycle, it said.
The games cover multiple genres ranging from casual, action, sports to mid-core multiplayer games such as Tennis, Golf etc. Each game is customised to support varied audience segments in over 12 regional languages and Indianized with culturally relevant online games for Bharat.
“For a larger part, gaming is considered as a hit or a miss opportunity among investors as unlike other industries such as e-commerce, SaaS and D2C, there is no stipulated playbook for creation of a successful Game. As a result of this, a lot of gaming ideas or teams do not get requisite support in form of capital, guidance or strategic help from the ecosystem,” said Paavan Nanda, co-founder, WinZO Games.
“We at WinZO are trying to change that because we believe that India is on the forefront of an opportunity where it can lead the world. Over the next decade, it will not just be a high potential market but will also be yielding multiple unicorns and some emerging gaming companies at a global scale,” said Nanda.
Indian Gaming Market
India’s gaming sector, which currently stands at $ 1.2 billion, is predicted to increase to $ 3 billion by 2023, with Gen-Z accounting for a third of the population. In addition, India now has over 365 million mobile gamers, and this number is likely to increase rapidly.
Within the sector WinZO generates revenue for the developers through a microtransaction based monetization model compared to the alternative means of In-app purchases and advertisements. It is also setting-up an internal team to evaluate and deploy this capital which will be directly working with the founders.
Between 2014 and the first few months of 2020, the gaming industry in India attracted $350 million. And in the period from August 2020 to January 2021, it attracted a whopping $544 million. According to a report by Maple Capital Advisors, this amount is set to double over 2021 till mid-2022.