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In 2018, Nitesh Salvi, Saurav Suman, Debashish Bhattacharjee, and Satyam Verma founded India’s first cryptographically secured Random Number Generator (RNG) online poker site, Pocket 52. Two years later, the company has flourished exponentially and recently secured $1.75 Million (~₹13.18 Crores) in a Series A funding round from game publisher Gameskraft.
The online poker industry in the country may still be at a nascent stage, but it is also crowded. Despite the fact, Pocket 52 had managed to differentiate itself by launching its very own online poker network called Pocket52 Network in November 2019. Pocket52 initially roped in online poker startup Calling Station as the first site on its network with other gaming companies like Nostragamus and Mobile Premier League (MPL) joining the network later.
The poker startup plans to use the fund raised from Gameskraft to improve its technology framework, expand the user base, and scale business operations as it looks to add more clients.
Talking about the funding, CEO and co-founder Nitesh Salvi told Livemint, “With Gameskraft on board as the lead investor, Pocket52 now has the additional operational, technological, and commercial flexibility to develop innovative and exciting new partnerships and offer a broader customer choice.”
“With the skill-based Real Money Gaming (RMG) space in India gaining whirlwind momentum, especially in online poker, we are positive about our association with Pocket52. We are confident that the future holds huge growth potential as the concept of shared liquidity pool is introduced in this market,” said Ramesh Prabhu, CFO of Gameskraft.
Pocket 52 is also looking to raise another $10 Million of institutional funding in the next three to six months to build newer gaming offerings, including Rummy.
However, this isn’t the first time that Pocket52 has secured funding. In December 2018, the company had successfully raised $600,000 in seed funding from Speciale Invest.
Lately, the online poker operator has also been upping the ante by offering its users bigger and better promotions and tournaments. For June, the online network will be hosting a whopping 368 MTTs, boasting a jaw-dropping ₹2.5 Crores in prize pool guarantees. This includes a flagship ₹10 Lakhs GTD primetime tourney ‘Pocket Aces’ every Sunday at 8 PM.
The company has reported close to 100,000 monthly active users, of which 70% are repeat customers, while the rest are new customers. The startup also claims that its user base has grown five times in the last three months during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It seems that Pocket 52 is now a part of the big leagues and will surely be coming out with more exciting offers and events in the days to come!