Sports tech startup Dream Sports — parent company of fantasy sports unicorn Dream11 — has made an initial allocation of $250 Mn to Dream Capital.
Dream Capital is the startup’s venture capital and acquisition arm. Dream Capital will follow a multi-stage investment strategy and will be investing $1 Mn to $100 Mn in startups in sports, gaming and fitness-tech.
To date, the company has evaluated over 250 startups and invested in eight companies. Some investments include the acquisition of DreamGameStudios (formerly known as Rolocule) — a mobile gaming studio building sports games. Others include minority investment in SoStronk — a B2C Esports platform for all competitive gamers and Elevar — a D2C performance sports footwear and equipment brand.
In May 2021, Dream Sports Investment infused $50 Mn in the startup’s multi-sport aggregator platform FanCode. It is planning for large follow-on rounds in Dream Sports incubated businesses like FanCode and DreamSetGo.
“As a multi-stage CVC, we provide patient capital plus deep tactical insights to startups to increase their probability of success,” said Dev Bajaj, managing director, Dream Capital.
“Our aim is to complement entrepreneurs with our strategy, product, and marketing knowledge that is not typically accessible at an early stage. Dream Capital is always looking to add talent to its team of entrepreneurs and VC and PE professionals with a passion for sports and gaming,” added Bajaj.
The open-ended (evergreen) fund will receive funding from the balance sheet of Dream Sports. The startup is aiming to increase the corpus of its fund in the future.
Founded in 2008 by Harsh Jain and Bhavit Sheth, Dream Sports is a sports technology company with brands such as Dream11, FanCode, DreamX, DreamSetGo, and DreamPay. Over the years, the startup has ventured into providing multiple fan engagement avenues, including fantasy sports, content, commerce, experiences, and events. The company is also planning to list next year.
According to an Inc42 report, Indian mobile gaming startups raised $180 Mn in funding in 2020 and has the potential to generate INR 1.5 Bn by online transactions by 2023.
Dream11 competes with other fantasy gaming companies in India like MyTeam11, Nazara-backed HalaPlay, Mobile Premier League (MPL), Fantain Sports, among others.
Besides Dream Sports, other startups like Lenskart (Vision Fund), Flipkart (Flipkart Ventures), Paytm (One97 Mobility Fund) have also turned into venture capital investors and provided early capital to help mobile-first startups.