Indiagames Ltd: Mobile Games and Beyond

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Case Details:

Case Code : BSTR218
Case Length : 24 Pages
Pages Period : 1999-2006
Organization : Indiagemes Ltd
Pub Date : 2006
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : India
Industry : Game Development

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Introduction Contd...

By 2006, Indiagames had become one of the top five mobile game companies in the world. The company was planning to enter the console5 game market in mid 2006. However, its future was increasingly dependent on its ability to deal with the scarcity of game developers, low device capabilities, growing competition, and high levels of piracy.

Background Note

The CEO and founder of Indiagames, Gondal was interested in video games right from his childhood. However, when he started his first company, Futura Academy of Computer Technology Interactive (FACT Interactive), in 1990, it was in computer consultancy services (multimedia training and computer repair services).

The company had five employees, who worked from Gondal's father's garage. As they were avid gamers, the team, also developed multimedia game kits. In July 1999, India was fighting6 a war against infiltrators at Kargil on its border with Pakistan. This inspired Gondal to develop a PC-based online game, where gamers could log on and fire bullets at a virtual Pakistani army.

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The game, which was free, became an instant hit and brought recognition to Gondal and his team. The success of the Kargil game also gave the team the idea to start an online gaming portal.

Gondal created, India's first game portal, in September 1999, at a time when the technology sector was booming, and venture capitalists were eager to invest in new technology firms.

In December 1999, Gondal was approached by Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PWC)7 , who arranged a meeting with two venture capital firms - IL&FS Investment Managers Ltd (IIML)8 and Infinity Ventures (IV).9

The firms agreed to invest s 32.50 million in the venture. In early 2000, FACT Interactive was renamed as Indiagames Ltd.

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5] A console is a dedicated electronic machine designed to play video games. Often the output device is a separate television or a computer monitor. The main input device is a controller. Some of the latest consoles are Gamecube (Nintendo), Playstation 2 (Sony), and the Xbox 360 (Microsoft).

6] What began as an infiltration of militants in the Kashmir valley through Kargil snowballed into a mini war between the Indian defense forces and the Pakistani army. The Indian forces were ultimately successful in thwarting the infiltrators' designs of occupying the border regions of Kargil.

7] PricewaterhouseCoopers Pvt. Ltd. (PwC) is one of the largest professional services companies in the world, providing industry - focused services to public and private clients.

8] IL&FS Investment Managers Ltd (IIML) is the private equity arm of Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services Ltd (IL & FS) a leading investment bank in India.

9] The Infinity Venture Fund ('Infinity') was established in February 2000, by domestic and offshore investors, with contributions from leading IT entrepreneurs, U.S. Technology funds, and domestic companies.


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