First gaming 'unicorn'? Dream11 joins $1B club with investment from Steadview Capital

Founded in 2008 by Bhavit Sheth and Harsh Jain, Dream11 is one of India's leading gaming platforms. In the last three years, Dream11’s user base has grown at a CAGR of around 230 percent, and it has 50 million registered users.

Fantasy gaming platform Dream11, following in the footsteps of recent ‘unicorns’ BigBasket and Delhivery, has joined the elite club of startups with a valuation of $1 billion or more. The Mumbai-based gaming startup confirmed the news on Tuesday, following the completion of a secondary investment by Steadview Capital.

With this, Steadview Capital, the Asia-focused alternative asset manager ,will come on board, buying secondary shares from existing investors of Dream11. The home-grown sports gaming site, which claims to be one of the biggest in India offering sports fans engagement with fantasy cricket, football, kabaddi, basketball, and hockey, is also backed by the marquee investors including Kalaari Capital, Think Investments, Multiples Equity and Tencent.

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The investment also marks the entry of the first Indian gaming startup into the coveted ‘unicorn’ club. Commenting on this milestone, Harsh Jain, CEO and Co-Founder of Dream11, said,

“We are excited to welcome Steadview Capital on board. Our exponential growth over the past few years would not have been possible without the support and trust of our investors and Dreamsters (employees). Providing great returns to our shareholders, whether investors or Dreamsters, is very important to us and further reinforces their belief in Dream11. We will keep working hard and are targeting to end the year with 100 million users.”

Founded in 2008 by Bhavit Sheth and Harsh Jain, Dream11 is currently among the country’s leading gaming platforms. The use base for the platform has been growing at a CAGR of around 230 percent over the period of three years, as per a IFSG-KPMG 2019 report, and it currently has some 50 million registered users.

“We, at Steadview, believe that Dream11 is poised to become the leading sports company in India catering to everything a sports fan needs,” said Ravi Mehta, Managing Director, Steadview Capital.  

On the latest development and Dream 11’s growth, he added,

“We think very highly of the visionary founders and are excited to partner with the team in this journey. The company’s phenomenal growth track record, dominant leadership in daily fantasy gaming, and strong engagement metrics are a testament to the consumer love for the platform.” 

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