PUBG creator Korean gaming startup Krafton, which is soon to launch its IPO in the domestic market, announced that it has invested $45 million (about 51.5 billion won) in India’s largest web novel platform ‘Pratilipi.‘ Krafton led the Series D round of funding for Pratilippi, which saw a total investment of approximately $48 million.
Expansions ahead of IPO in Korea
Krafton has been on an investment and acquisition spree this year. It acquired the Korean dating app Between and chatbot entertainment startup Thingsflow recently. The gaming startup also invested in another Indian game streaming platform, LOCO, last month. Pratilippi is India’s largest web novel platform with 30 million monthly active users (MAU) and 370,000 writers. The service is provided in 12 Indian languages. Recently, collaboration with related companies is accelerating to offer various types of content such as general books, animations, TV series, and web novels. In addition, the service range is expanding by releasing Pratilippi FM and Pratilipi Comics.
Hyunil Son, Head of Investment Division at Krafton, said, “Watching the growth of Indian IP through Pratilipi’s books, comics, and audio platforms, I believe in the long-term potential that Indian IP can succeed not only in India but also globally. Since it already has a multilingual platform in the field of web novels, we see it as a company that will grow significantly in the future market.” Pratilippi Ranjit Pratap Singh, the CEO, said, “Through this investment, we are delighted to be able to share Pratilippi’s wonderful story and IP (intellectual property) with Krafton. We are looking forward to working with Krafton and other investors in the stage of bringing it to more users.”
Investments in India & deal with Tesla
Meanwhile, Krafton continues to make bold investments in the Indian game industry. In November of last year, it established a branch in India. In March last year, it invested 22.5 billion won or around $20 million in NODWIN Gaming, India’s leading e-sports company. In addition, in June, a seed round investment of $9 million (KRW 10.1 billion) was made with various investors in LOCO, India’s leading game streaming platform. Up to this investment in Pratilippi, Krafton has invested a total of $70 million (about 80.2 billion won) in Indian IT companies this year.
Krafton is also partnering with Elon Musk’s Tesla to bring “exclusive” in-game content to PUBG’s Indian version Battleground Mobile India including its Gigafactory, Model Y, and more. The new content will be part of the game’s July update, which is also the first major update for Battlegrounds Mobile India since its launch in early July. PUBG Mobile was banned in India last year over privacy and security concerns. It is currently available for Android devices only.
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