Sequoia Capital-backed fantasy gaming and esports platform Mobile Premier League (MPL) has become the second gaming unicorn in India after it raised a growth round led by Dubai-based Legatum Capital.
The Series E round valued the Bengaluru-based startup at $2.3 billion pre-money, helping it more than double its valuation in 7 months. The startup had commanded a valuation of $945 million when it raised $95 million in its Series D funding round in February.
Dream Sports, the parent of MPL’s primary rival Dream11, became the first gaming unicorn to emerge from India in April 2019. The company is currently valued at $5 billion.
Returning investors in MPL’s growth round included Sequoia, SIG, RTP Global, Go-Ventures, Moore Strategic Ventures, Play Ventures, Base Partners, Telstra Ventures, and Founders Circle Capital, according to an official statement.
The company said it will use the fresh capital to finance global expansion, invest in technology, and drive growth in the Indian market.
MPL had expanded operations to the US market in July this year after finding success in India and Indonesia.
“This investment is a recognition of the potential of the Indian gaming and esports industry and an endorsement of the capability of MPL to expand globally. MPL’s proven success in India and Indonesia encouraged us to launch in the US, one of the world’s largest gaming markets. Our US operations are off to a promising start and we’re thus fulfilling our resolve to make our platform the esports and gaming hub of the world” said Sai Srinivas, Co-founder and CEO, MPL.
The company claims to have over 85 million registered users globally.
“Legatum is delighted to have led this latest round of funding for MPL as it continues its incredible growth trajectory and becomes the world’s leading esports and skill gaming platform. It is an honour to support Sai, Shubh, and the outstanding team at MPL and to join the other world-class investors in building a company that provides a top-class gaming experience for users, unmatched distribution for developers and a commitment to building a company with the best global talent and a winning culture,” Legatum CEO Mark Stoleson said.
As part of the transaction, Stoleson has joined the board of MPL.
MPL was founded by Sai Srinivas and Shubh Malhotra in 2018. It works with game developers and publishes their games on its platform. It has also established a $5 million fund to back game developers. MPL has on-boarded over 70 games on its platform and employs over 800 people across offices Bengaluru, Pune, Jakarta, Singapore and New York.
Earlier this year, the company acquired esports firm Gaming Monk to develop a full suite of esports and live streaming capabilities.
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