Game streaming platform Loco raises $9 mn from Lumikai, Korea’s Krafton

Loco, a leading homegrown game streaming platform, has secured $9 million for its first round of fundraising as an independent company. The seed round was led by South Korean gaming firm, Krafton, as well as Lumikai, India’s first gaming interactive media fund. The round also saw participation by Hashed, Hiro Capital, North Base Media, Axilor Ventures, 3one4 Capital.

The new investment will fuel the platform’s innovation efforts across game streaming technology gaming content, helping it cement its leadership position as the home of Indian gaming. With this raise, Loco will be spun off into an independent entity from its parent, Pocket Aces, India’s largest digital entertainment company. Pocket Aces founders Anirudh Pandita Ashwin Suresh will lead Loco going forward, while co-founder Aditi Shrivastava will continue to lead Pocket Aces.

Loco has been a pioneer in the live game streaming esports sector in India. This is paving the way for gaming to go from a niche hobby to mainstream national interest.

“Our platform empowers novice gamers to become household names has built the foundation for the rise of a new creator economy in India. We are just getting started on our mission to build the home of Indian gaming we will work relentlessly to make India a global gaming superpower,” said Anirudh Pandita Ashwin Suresh, Founders of Loco.

“With this investment, we have been joined on our mission by the pioneers of the global gaming industry. This will enable us to create value for users in ways that no other game streaming platform in India can.”

Loco has built highly engaged communities across various games including FreeFire, Call of Duty Mobile, Clash of Clans, GrTheft Auto (GTA), Valorant. It is also in the process of building in-game integrations with international partners. In addition to these partnerships, Loco has teamed up with global giants like the NBA, Logitech, Red Bull to run India-focused esports programmes.

“At Krafton, we believe gamers appetite is only increasing in consuming live video game content Loco is best placed in India to provide a world-class game streaming platform it has built a passionate community around itself,” said Sean Hyunil Sohn, Head of Corporate Development at Krafton.

Loco has grown rapidly over the past 12 months, with monthly active viewers scaling by 6x, monthly active streamers scaling by 10x, live watch hours scaling by 48x since June 2020. Today, highly active users spend about 1 hour daily on Loco, making it the gaming community’s platform of choice for a seamless streaming viewing experience. Loco offers a slew of interactive features that other VOD (video on demand) first platforms don’t offer. The platform’s focus on mobile gaming communities helps it serve those communities in ways that desktop-focused platforms have not been able to do. Loco also helps beginner creators through various initiatives including its one-click mobile streaming app creator programme.

Salone Sehgal, General Partner of Lumikai, said 67 per cent of India’s millennials are gamers. The Indian esports streaming industry is expected to grow at a 36 per cent CAGR over the next 3 years, with game streaming watch time in India already 2x the global average.

“Loco is fast emerging as a market maker with an unparalleled reach into the community of Indian streamers,” said Sehgal.

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