India’s Mobile Premier League, or MPL, is in talks to raise capital from a number of investors, including crypto exchange FTX as the mobile game startup prepares to push the web3 , three well-informed sources told me.
An investment that would mark a significant change in the future prospects of the Bengaluru-based startup as it prepares to expand its offerings in a new, buzzy category.
MPL operates more than 60 mobile games including several sports-based, card-based and fantasy games. In recent weeks, it has informed a number of existing and new potential investors that it plans to launch NFT-based and monetized games later this year, sources said. , requested anonymity because discussions were ongoing and they were not authorized to speak to the press.
MPL, including Sequoia Capital India and RTP Global among its current supporterssought to raise new investment as an extension to a Series E round at a $2.5 billion valuation, one of the sources said.
The terms of the investment are subject to change, the sources warned. FTX did not respond to a request for comment at press time. In a statement, an MPL spokesman said: “as a company policy, we do not comment on speculations.”
MPL has accumulated more than 5 million monthly active “playing cash” users, it revealed in an investor presentation in December, reviewed by me. The presentation says its average monthly revenue per user is around $5.
During the presentation, the MPL said it was building the “game delivery platform of tomorrow” where more than 500 million tournaments were held each month.
A handful of established startups in India are starting to explore opportunities in the web3 space. Dream11, MPL’s main rival in India, is looking to lead a $100 million investment in NFT’s Rario startup, TechCrunch previously reported. NFT Cricket startup FanCraze, which was recently valued at $500 million in a round led by Insight Partners, has plans to expand into gaming, it said.
Glance, a subsidiary of InMobi Group backed by Google and Jio Platforms, acquired gaming platform Gambit last month to present NFT-based incentive and live game shows to users.
The upcoming investment in MPL will officially mark the arrival of FTX, worth 32 billion dollarsinto India’s startup ecosystem, where it has so far been mainly engaged through partnerships and funding modes.
In contrast, FTX rival Coinbase has made a number of investments in the country, including two leading local crypto exchanges, CoinSwitch Kuber and CoinDCX. Two Indian crypto exchanges compete with WazirX, which is owned by Binance.