Bangalore-based offline & online game maker MadRat Games has raised about Rs 1.8 crore from the founders of ecommerce rivals Flipkart and Snapdeal. Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal of Flipkart made their investment in November while Snapdeal’s Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal did so recently.
Founded in 2010 by Rajat Dhariwal, Madhumita Halder and Manuj Dhariwal, MadRat Games had previously raised $500,000 from First Light Ventures and Blume Ventures in December 2012 and $1 million investment from a series of investors including Flipkart founder Sachin & Binny Bansal, Pine Labs and GlobalLogic in November 2014.
The ecommerce founding pairs didn’t have any issues over their counterparts investing in the firm, said CEO Rajat Dhariwal, an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay and Carnegie Mellon University. “Everyone is building brands in-house. In the kids category, I think the two companies see us as a top brand,” he added.
“Innovation is at the heart of MadRat Games,” said Binny Bansal, the single largest investor in the round. The company has Ravi Vora, CEO of the strategic brands group at Flipkart, on its board. Snapdeal said it won’t be able to comment on the personal investments of the founders. Dhariwal suggested that investors see potential in MadRat.
“Learning should be like osmosis. It should happen without them (kids) knowing about it,” said Dhariwal. The market is large, with the Indian toy industry expected to expand to Rs 13,000 crore in 2015 from Rs 8,000 crore in 2013, according to a report by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India ( Assocham).