Bangalore-based offline gaming products startup MadRat Games which builds educational board games has raised about $168k (INR 1.8 Cr.) in a seed round funding led by Snapdeal’s founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal. MadRat will use the funds for branding, marketing and expanding its business.
MadRat is the same startup that managed to raise its previous funding from Snapdeal’s rival Flipkart’s founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal. Also, Ravi Vora, CEO of the strategic brands group at Flipkart, is in the Board of MadRat Games.
Rajat Dhariwal, CEO of MadRat Games said, “They (the other investors) started smiling when I told them both Snapdeal and Flipkart are participating. ‘How did you manage that?’ was their first question.” – reported ET.
Founded in 2010 by Rajat Dhariwal, Madhumita Halder and Manuj Dhariwal, MadRat builds offline educational games such as board games, learning puzzles, toys and mobile games. It has introduced a twist to traditional board games; for example, a jigsaw puzzle is usually discarded after being solved a few times. MadRat has sought to build on this, adding card games based on the pictures in the jigsaw or getting players to hunt for tiny characters hidden in the puzzle with a magnifying glass.
Their games are priced at around INR 500 to INR 1,000 each. Currently, they are available in 400 stores across 10 cities and on ecommerce sites like Flipkart and Snapdeal.
As per the experience of founders Dhariwal and Madhumita who taught kids for four years at Rishi Valley School in Andhra Pradesh, it showed them that children learn best when not being forced to. “Learning should be like osmosis. It should happen without them (kids) knowing about it,” said Dhariwal.
Earlier, the company aimed at being product-centric approach but has now come up with a brand new look for its games and also the distribution strategy.
Indian toy industry has an estimated worth around $2 bn in 2015 according to a research.
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