The mobile game development arm of MPL, Mayhem Studios, has reportedly raised $20 million in its Series A funding round, led by Sequoia Capital India, with participation from Steadview Capital, Truecaller, and other investors. The company plans to use the incoming funds to expand its capabilities and develop new games in India. Mayhem Studios develops AAA mobile games and competes with Dream Game Studios and Nazara Technologies, among others. MPL, the parent company of Mayhem Studios, offers various gaming options, including skill-based games like daily fantasy sports and chess to casual games such as 8 Ball Pool and Fruit Ninja.
It last raised $150 million in its unicorn round in September 2021.The distinction between games of skill and games of chance is an important development for the online gaming industry as it will determine the level of regulation and taxation for different types of games. The industry has been requesting this differentiation for a long time, and it is expected to provide some relief to skill-based gaming platforms. However, there is still a lack of clarity on taxation as the Finance Bill stipulates that online gaming is subject to 30% tax on any prize money earned by customers. The industry is still waiting for further clarity on this issue. India’s gaming market has been growing rapidly in recent years, with the number of gamers increasing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12% from 450 million in FY18 to 507 million in FY22. The market size was estimated at $2.6 billion in FY22 and is predicted to reach $8.6 billion by FY27, according to a report by Lumikai. The growth in the gaming industry can be attributed to factors such as increasing internet penetration, the proliferation of smartphones, and the rise of affordable data plans. The industry is expected to continue to grow as more consumers in India adopt gaming as a form of entertainment and as new technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality become more accessible.