Silicon Valley-based mobile startup accelerator Tandem Capital and other investors have made over 100x returns on their investments in Bangalore- and California- based Bash Gaming (formerly BitRhymes India Pvt Ltd and now under BitRhymes Inc), which has been acquired by US-based multimedia gaming and entertainment company Game Show Network LLC (GSN), according to various media reports.
This marks one of the most profitable exits for an early stage investor in an Indian startup ever, beating other prominent exits in the recent past such as sale of redBus to Naspers and Little Eye Labs’ acquisition by Facebook.
As per a TechCrunch report quoting sources, GSN acquired Bash Gaming in a deal worth $165 million, which was closed on Monday.
Bash Gaming was incubated at Tandem Capital, which was co-founded by Indian-born Sunil Bhargava. In April 2012, Bash Gaming had secured $1 million in angel funding from a group of investors, including IGN founder Mark Jung, World Golf Tour chief executive Yu Chiang, former general counsel of Apple and Oracle Dan Cooperman and Doug Bergeron, the chief executive of VeriFone.
Founded by Sumit Gupta (CEO) in early 2010, Bash Gaming is the creator of breakout hit Bingo Bash—the leading social bingo game in the world with more than 4.8 million monthly active users (MAUs) playing across Facebook, iOS, Android and Kindle devices. Bash Gaming makes casino games for social and mobile platforms.
Gupta has 15 years of product and business experience in media and technology and prior to setting up Bash Gaming, he was VP – strategy and business development at Monetize Media. Previously, he was a founding team member at Business Signatures, which was acquired by Entrust. He had also earlier worked at Oracle’s CRM division. The firm established its game studio in early 2010. After creating titles like Salon Street, it embarked on cross platform multi-player casino and card games in early 2011.
GSN is a leading provider of cross-platform entertainment, including social casino games and skill tournaments. Founded in 1999 as skill games site WorldWinner.com, the company has evolved into a premier social, mobile and online games firm.
Founded in 2007 by Indian-born Sunil Bhargava, Doug Renert and Joyo Wijaya, Tandem Capital invests ‘muscle capital’ in disruptive mobile products and platforms across geographies. Bhargava has 20 years of technology and marketing experience and has worked with Xerox PARC, HP, Oracle, Webvan and Business Signatures. Tandem Capital recently launched an India-focused fund and roped in Manipal Education and Medical Group’s CEO Ranjan Pai and its chief advisor TV Mohandas Pai (they are not related) as partners; it will invest in 20 startups in the country over the next 12 months.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)