WestBridge-backed Nazara buys majority stake in gaming platform SportsUnity
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Mobile game developer Nazara Technologies Ltd has acquired a majority stake in Delhi-based SportsUnity Pvt. Ltd, a gaming platform that operates online multiplayer quiz service Qunami.

Mumbai-based Nazara said in a statement its investment is part of SportsUnity’s funding round of Rs 7.5 crore (about $1.05 million). Delhi-based lawyer Vaibhav Gaggar also participated in the round.

Nazara didn’t give a breakup of the investment.

Nazara CEO Manish Agarwal said SportsUnity will leverage its network to grow into a consumer-centric internet brand and build quizzing as a leading real-money gaming categories in emerging markets.

SportsUnity co-founder Seemant Shankar said the acquisition would help Qunami with its growth plans. “Quizzing attracts audiences of all demography and possesses a massive potential to scale,” Shankar said.

Qunami says it allows players on its platform to compete with one another for prize money in a one-on-one and team formats. Games usually last for around two minutes. The app claims to have crossed over 40,000 monthly active users, according to media reports.

SportsUnity adds to Nazara’s growing bets in the mobile gaming segment. The WestBridge Capital-backed company has acquired several mobile gaming projects from emerging markets around the world, including in India, West Asia and Latin America. It also recently invested in NZWorld Kenya Ltd to help set up real-money gaming operations in Kenya.

In May, the company invested in vernacular social contests platform Bakbuck, which said it would use the investment to enhance product development and acquire new users. In March, Nazara was part of a Rs 40 crore Series A investment in fantasy sports startup HalaPlay Technologies Pvt. Ltd.

Gaming deals

Interest in the fantasy and sports gaming segment has burgeoned of late, especially with the establishment and popularity of leagues for different sports such as the Indian Premier League and the Pro Kabaddi League.

The biggest beneficiary of investor capital has been the Mumbai-based gaming firm Dream11 Fantasy Pvt. Ltd, which counts cricketer MS Dhoni as an ambassador. In April, Multiples PE and Vani Kola-led Kalaari Capital sold part of their stake in Dream11 to hedge fund Steadview Capital in a transaction that valued the gaming company at more than $1 billion.

Earlier this month, fantasy games startup LivePools Pvt. Ltd. raised funding from Dan Bilzerian, a professional poker player and Instagram influencer. Actor Dino Morea is also an investor in the company.

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