Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio made a foray into AI and gaming on Wednesday leading the Series A funding of mobile gaming company Krikey. The total funding raised by the San Francisco-based startup now stands at $22 Mn.
As part of the announcement, Krikey has launched Yaatra, a new AR game that invites users to step in an action-adventure story to defeat a monster army. “Using weapons such as the bow and arrow, chakra, lightning and fire bolts, players can battle through different levels of combat and puzzle games,” Krikey said.
In a statement, Akash Ambani, director of Jio, said, “Krikey will inspire a generation of Indians to embrace Augmented Reality. Our vision is to bring the best experiences from across the world to India and the introduction of Yaatra is a step in that direction. Augmented Reality gaming takes the user into a world of its own, and we invite every Jio and non-Jio user to experience AR through Yaatra.”
While the game is available in the IOS App Store and Google Play store, Jio users will have access to exclusive 3D Avtaar feature, Gameplay tokens (to unlock additional weapons and powers and some of the game levels).
Besides turning net-debt free, Reliance is also one of the most valuable Indian companies today. Reliance’s growth had been spurred by Reliance’s digital business Jio Platform, which raised INR 1.52 Lakh Cr ($20 Bn) from marquee investors like Google, Facebook, Qualcomm and several Middle Eastern sovereign funds in just three months.
Beyond the investment, Jio Platforms has been basking in the glory of a massive spike in the user base of its growing network of digital apps. One of the biggest businesses in Reliance’s digital gig is its telecom unit Reliance Jio Infocomm, which became the biggest telecom network in India surpassing VI (Vodafone Idea) in October 2019.
Reliance Jio Infocomm has recorded a 33% growth rate in its revenue from INR 40.8K Cr in FY2019 to INR 54.5K Cr in FY2020. Though the company’s expense has also grown by 29% to INR 46K Cr, it has managed to widen its profit margins by nearly INR 2,600 Cr. The company had reported a profit of INR 2,982 Cr in FY2019 which has nearly doubled to INR 5,599 Cr in FY2020.