#BYMEspresso☕: Dream11—A Legel Way to Gamble
Dream 11 became India's first gaming 'unicorn' after a secondary investment by London and Hong Kong-based Steadview Capital, driving its valuation to over $1 billion.
Harsh Jain, along with Bhavit Sheth, started Dream11 in 2008 as a fantasy sports platform that lets users create virtual teams with real players for cricket, kabaddi and football, among other sports and help them organise matches.
It was an ad-based sports app and free for all users when it started, but that business model did not work out for long. The company then launched a freemium model wherein free features were made accessible to users till a point, and after that, they had to pay. This worked as revenues rose with growing users and remain the model followed by the company to date.
Soon, Dream 11 became India's first gaming 'unicorn' after a secondary investment by London and Hong Kong-based Steadview Capital, driving its valuation to over $1 billion.
So how did this happen?
With the growing users and exponential growth, top investors worldwide like Think Investments, Multiples and Kalaari Capital started taking an interest in the platform. In 2018, it raised $100 million from China-based Tencent at a valuation of $700 million.
Former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni endorses the brand. Dream11 also entered a four-year partnership with the BCCI this year.
It is associated with the Indian Premier League (IPL), International Council of Cricket, Pro Kabaddi League, Indian Super League, National Basketball Association, Caribbean Premier League, International Hocket Federation and Big Bash League.
Dream11's success in the industry may serve as an example for other entrepreneurs looking to tap into the fantasy gaming industry. Fantasy gaming in India is growing at a CAGR of 28 percent to touch $1.2 billion by the end of 2022.
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