The fresh financing comes on the back of the Mumbai-based firm
closing a $400 million secondary funding round in March, which valued the company at around $5 billion.
The 13-year-old company has diversified its offerings in recent years to cover sports technology products and services. It
recently committed $50 million to inhouse sports content and commerce platform, FanCode, in a broader push to become a one-stop destination for sports. Dream Sports also introduced payment solutions through Dream Pay, launched an accelerator called DreamX, and operates DreamSetGo, a sports experiential company. In August, the firm said it
had set up a corporate venture arm, Dream Capital, with a corpus of $250 million to transition into a sports technology conglomerate.
Harsh Jain, cofounder and CEO, said the company will focus on creating a thriving sports ecosystem that goes beyond fantasy gaming. “We are now doing sports commerce, data analytics, merchandise, investing in sports startups and then there are platforms like Fancode which have substantially scaled up for us. We see a massive opportunity in going deep into sports like kabaddi… beyond cricket… and that is what we are aiming to do with this funding,” Jain said.
The company will remain private for now, he said,
amid a spate of tech startups tapping the public markets.
“We are not going to go public because the market is hot, we will do so when we think we are solving a problem. For the next year or so, it is not in our plans,” he said.
Cofounded by Jain and Bhavit Sheth in 2008, Dream Sports has a user base of 140 million, which it seeks to leverage for building a complete sports experience. For the financial year ending March 2020, it recorded a profit of Rs 180 crore, making it one of the few Indian consumer-tech unicorns to have turned profitable.
In an interview to ET previously, Jain had said, “We have one good core business which has market leadership in its area. Now, we want to go and build the YouTube, Gmail and Google Maps of sports. We want to build an Alphabet-like entity, not just Google Search.” Alphabet Inc is Google’s parent company.
Dream Capital has so far backed 10 companies, including, Fittr, SoStronk, KheloMore and Elevar. It is now expanding its sports, fan engagement and fitness portfolio in India and overseas.
Dream Sports’ latest fundraising comes amid on-again, off-again regulatory roadblocks that the online gaming industry has been facing in the country.
Earlier this month, the Karnataka High Court
extended a partial relief it had granted to the cofounders of Dream Sports. It meant that the Bengaluru Police would not be able to take any coercive action against them until further court orders. In October, the Annapoorneshwari Nagar Police station
had registered an FIR against the fantasy gaming platform on a complaint from a city resident that it was violating a new state law that bans wagering and betting on online games. Dream 11 suspended its operations in Karnataka, adding the “decision is without prejudice to our rights and contentions under law.” The Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act, 2021
came into effect on October 5, and bans online “games of chance”.
Dream11 has reiterated that it had been advised by the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports that the law does not apply to its member fantasy sports operators.