Nazara Technologies sets up operations for ‘Real Money Gaming’ in Kenya
Mumbai, June 3rd, 2018: Nazara Technologies Limited (Nazara) expands its operations in Kenya to tap the real money gaming market, through the incorporation of a subsidiary, NZWorld Kenya Limited (NZWorld). Nazara holds a 70% stake in NZ World. NZ World in partnership with Nazara has secured a betting license from the Betting Control Board of Kenya to operate certain products within the license. NZ World is planning to launch sports betting, sports fantasy, Sports Arcade and Sports Real Money Quiz starting with FIFA in June 2018.
According to Manish Agarwal, CEO, Nazara Technologies, “Real Money gaming is popular in African countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon in addition to Kenya, primarily on account of a well laid out and clear licensing framework. We are excited to leverage Nazara’s on-ground network built over the last few years so as to exploit the sports betting and the fantasy market in the African countries beginning with FIFA 18.”
We believe that with penetration of internet, affordability of smartphones and declining data prices, the gaming industry is picking up pace across emerging markets. Given Nazara’s presence in these markets, we believe that Nazara is well poised to offer the right product mix from amongst its stable investee companies and developer partners.
The product proposed to be launched in Kenya is a real-time social predication sports game where players can bet real-time among their friends, which was developed by one of Nazara’s investee companies, Mastermind Sports (Mastermind). “Worldwide, real-money sports gaming is becoming mainstream. We’re excited to create a differentiated product experience by leveraging fan insights & our technology expertise. We believe that Africa, starting with Kenya, presents a growth opportunity for us with their appetite for live sports gaming”. says Pratik Shah, Founder & CEO, Mastermind Sports.
Nazara also invested in HalaPlay, a Daily Fantasy Sports platform in the second half of 2017. “We believe Fantasy Sports is the best way to engage sports fans all across the globe. Positive feedback and growth in user base in India on our product in last 1 year, gives us the confidence to take our product global. Kenya, being a soccer crazy nation, we believe that there could not be a better time than FIFA World Cup to start our operations, with support of Nazara and their network”, says Swapnil CEO & Co Founder, HalaPlay
Apart from Mastermind Sports and HalaPlay, Nazara has also invested in Moong Labs. Nazara acquired Nextwave Multimedia of World Cricket Championship (WCC) fame and NODWIN Gaming, which are in line with building a network of synergistic companies for operations in India and other emerging markets across Middle East, Africa and South East Asia.
Nazara Technologies Limited has filed DRHP and has received investments from IIFL Asset Management and Rakesh Jhunjhunwala recently. With (ESL’s) investment in Nazara and NODWIN’s securing exclusive rights of using the ESL system and platform for the next 5 years, Nazara is poised to exploit the expected opportunity in the esports business.
About Nazara Technologies Ltd.
Nazara is a mobile games company headquartered in Mumbai, India and has operations in 61 countries across emerging markets, as on September 30, 2017. Nazara runs mobile gaming subscription services to mass mobile internet users in emerging markets, comprising largely of first time mobile gamers across Africa, Middle East, South East Asia, Latin America and the Indian subcontinent. In India, Nazara has licensed mobile gaming rights to popular IP’ like Virat Kohli, Hrithik Roshan, ChhotaBheem, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Motu Patlu, Mighty Raju, Shikari Shambhu, Suppandi and Chacha Choudhary.
Nazara was one of the leading publishers by downloads on Google Play Store with 44.49 million downloads until September, 2017 in calendar year 2017 and 19.34 million downloads in calendar year 2018. Nazara’s independent subsidiary Next Wave Multimedia is IP owner of World Cricket Championship franchise.
Nextwave Multimedia Private Limited (‘Nextwave’) had 64.30 millions downloads, in calendar year 2017, until September, 2017, and 42.02 million downloads in calendar year 2016.
Nextwave’s monthly active users (MAUs) in September 2017 were 11.02 million as compared to 6.00 million MAUs in September 2016, across its World Cricket Championship franchise
Nazara Technologies Limited is proposing, subject to receipt of requisite approvals, market conditions and other considerations, to make an initial public offer of its equity shares and has filed a draft red herring prospectus dated January 31, 2018 (“DRHP”) with the Securities and Exchange Board of India. The DRHP is available on the website of the SEBI at www.sebi.gov.in as well as on the websites of the lead managers, ICICI Securities Limited and Edelweiss Financial Services Limited. Investors should note that investment in equity shares involves a high degree of risk and for details relating to such risk, see “Risk Factors” of the Red Herring Prospectus, when available. Potential investors should not rely on the DRHP for any investment decision.
The Equity Shares of the company have not been, and will not be registered under the Securities Act of 1933 (“Securities Act”) or any other applicable law of the United States of America and unless so registered, and may not be offered or sold within the United States of America, except pursuant to an exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act, and applicable state securities laws. Accordingly, the Equity Shares are being offered and sold outside the United States of America in offshore transactions in reliance on Regulation S under the Securities Act. The Equity Shares have not been and will not be registered, listed or otherwise qualified in any other jurisdiction outside India and may not be offered or sold, and bids may not be made by persons in any such jurisdiction, except in compliance with the applicable laws of such jurisdiction.