GROWTH OF THE POKER INDUSTRY(RMG) IN INDIA

The poker industry, part of real money gaming, is becoming one of the popular gaming sectors in India by providing both entertainment and reeling in money. Poker is not new to India so when Covid struck, the users started to grow and it became one of the fastest-growing sectors in the real money gaming industry. As of February 2020, there are more than 3 million active poker players in India and the industry is worth Rs 400 crores, playing as a major source of commerce and revenue in India.

OVERVIEW OF SOME MAJOR ONLINE POKER SITES

APPSUSERSREVENUEPOSITIVE REVIEWSNEGATIVE REVIEWS
MPLover 60 million$1.5- $2 billionSafe and secureOen bans/blocks accounts, poor customer service
Adda52over 2.3 million$32.1 MProvides all poker variants, good customer supportUsers say the game is rigged
PokerBaaziover 2 million$14.1 MTransferring of money is easily doneUsers claim it is fraud
9stacksover 32 millionGMV of the industry is more than $10M every month.The interface is user friendly, quick cash outSome users claim it cheated off their money.

WBOC, virtual channel 16 situated in Maryland claims, “The India online poker and rummy market has the potential to grow with USD 2.22 billion with historical CAGR in the forecast period from 2020-2027.”[1]

A KPMG (financial audit, tax, and advisory company), the report estimates that the online gaming industry in India is at Rs 4,380 crore in the financial year 2018 and estimates it will grow at a CAGR(Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 22.1 per cent and will touch Rs. 11,880 crore by the financial year 2023.

KEY GROWTH FACTORS

Research Report

  1. Increase usage of smartphones and the internet. One of the main factors of the increase in this industry is the increased usage of internet users. India has over 560 million internet users currently and it has been estimated that the number would reach up to 650 million by 2023. This increase directly results from affordable mobile data packs, 5G networks being offered by multiple telecom operators.
  2. Wider market range. Because of the rise in the number of smartphone users, the market range for poker also increased as the users are constantly looking for new forms of entertainment. The aging population, in particular, started to take more interest in the online real money gaming sector. As online poker games attract global customers, it is easily accessible for people who are not particularly interested in live poker games.
  3. Rising usage of E-wallets. The increase in usage of digital payments also plays a major role in driving growth in the poker industry. As these payments are entirely safe, it increases the interest in real money gaming sectors.
  4. Improved technology for better gaming interface. The developers of online poker are developing innovative formats to increase gaming satisfaction. The new additions transform the gaming formats from monotonous into exciting real-world opportunities that drive in more money.

INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT

The poker industry is growing at a percentage of 35-40% year-on-year. Sai Srinivas(co-founder of MPL) said, “We’re[MPL] at about a $1.5- $2 billion annual revenue run rate. We believe that the Indian market will grow at least another 40-50% for us over the course of the next 12-18 months.”[2] This rapid increase is bringing international support in the form of investment.

Mobile Premier League, which recently became a unicorn club, has raised $90 million in 2020 from Susquehanna International Group(SIG Global) and early-stage tech investor RTP Global, along with MDI Ventures and Pegasus Tech Ventures. If the industry continues to be carefully regulated by the government, it will open more doors to foreign investors.

Research Report

RECENT DEVELOPMENTS[3]

  • In September 2021, the Karnataka government announced a ban on online gambling and betting.
  • In August 2021, Tamil Nadu partially lied the ban on online gambling.
  • August 2021, EvenBet Gaming company entered into the Indian real money gaming market with the new poker game called ‘Call Break.’
  • August 2021, Nazara Technologies Ltd. announced a 100% stake acquisition in Hyderabad-based skill gaming company, OpenPlay Technologies for ₹186.4 crores.
  • March 2021, Flutter Entertainment, owner of PokerStars acquired a 50.1% stake in an Indian online rummy operator Junglee Rummy for USD 66.2 Million.

FUTURE TRENDS[4]

  • Live dealer poker games’ population is expected to increase.
  • Competition between the industry dominators will increase.
  • Increase in demand for mobile poker
  • The emergence of poker live streams
  • Attention towards responsible gaming will increase

CONCLUSION

There is a question that will the online poker industry survive the post-covid world that keeps rising and seeing the current growth and estimated growth this particular real money gaming industry will succeed. It is also noted that the market is yet to show signs of peaking. This shows that the poker industry will not slow down rather only flourish in the near years.

Credit: This report has been written by Sayeeda.

ALSO READ : Top 5 Investment Strategies in Poker.

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