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Sequoia Capital & others invest $5 million in skill gaming mobile app MPL



Venture capital firm Sequoia Capital has led a US$5 million (around Rs. 35.1 crore) Series A funding round in Galactus Funware Technology Pvt. Ltd., the company that operates digital skill gaming startup app Mobile Premier League (MPL).

As per an exclusive report in VCCircle, Sequoia Capital led the funding round and some other existing angel investors also participated in the exercise. The funds will be used by MPL to expand its operations and build its product.  The valuation at which the company received the funding has not been revealed.

Founded by technology entrepreneurs Sai Srinivas Kiran Garimella and Shubham Malhotra, MPL allows users to participate in tournaments of various skill games such as fruit chop, monster truck, space breaker, sudoku etc.

Users are awarded real cash for winning the tournament and winners can immediately cash out their prizes through Paytm, UPI or bank transfer.

MPL claims to be the largest real-money mobile e-sports platform in the world and according to Google Playstore, the MPL app has been downloaded more than 1 million times.

At present, users can participate in the MPL tournaments using tokens and it is understood that players do not have to deposit own entry fees to participate in the games, although it is not clear whether this would continue be the business model of the company, going forward.

Apart from mobile games, several other startups have started offering real money quiz contests and other puzzle-based games for real money under the skill gaming category. In 2014, Sequoia Capital had invested around $15 million in a Series A funding round in  another mobile teenpatti and social gaming company, Octro.