The Corporate Venture Capital and M&A arm of Dream Sports, Dream Capital is likely to fund $100m in an NFT startup Rario as reported by Economic Times. If this happens, it will surely be one of the largest NFT investments in India. This will be Dream Capital’s maiden bet in the Web3 space.
The co-founders of Rairo are Sunny Bhanot and Ankit Wadhwa. The company was founded in 2021 amid global boom in NFTs and cryptocurrency. The company had raised an undisclosed amount from Presight Capital and Kingsway Capital last year. The company has already procured NFT rights to five international leagues and over 600 cricketers across the globe. The rights will now allow Rairo to create digital player cards like trump cards and could be linked to games and applications.
“The investment will allow Dream Sports to create utilities on the rights Rairo has acquired,” said one person as reported by economic times.
Although Dream Sports and Rario refused to comment on this, it is believed Rairo and Dream Sports are exploring various partnerships.
So far, Rairo has attracted buyers from over 19 countries and has already minted and sold over 50,000 NFTs on its platform.
Recently, US based Dream Sports which is the parent company of Dream11 had invested $50m in a content and commerce platform FanCode. At this point of time, Dream11 has over 140 million users and was valued at $8 billion after it raised $840 million back in November last year.
“Dream Sports will be entering the Web3 and NFT space in a big way and is looking for talent with whom we can build the entire NFT sector in India together,” said Harsh Jain, co-founder and CEO, Dream11 at a virtual event - NFTIndia - on Thursday as reported by economic times.
“We learnt that instant gratification, low time commitment and an opportunity for great sports engagement are important for sports fans worldwide,” he added.
Harsh Jain said that NFTs could solve a common problem for all the sports lovers out there which is to engage deeply with the sport and win through the game of skill.
Rario is attempting to do what SoftBank backed Sorare does for football. Basically it is a fantasy gaming platform wherein people buy, sell, trade and manage a virtual team with digital player cards. Rario is trying to build the same for cricket.
Last year, we saw Indian cricketers and Bollywood stars mint NFTs in an attempt to monetise their brands and fan base.
Recently, multiple NFT players raised their concern after finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman imposed a flat 30% tax on all digital assets and a 1% TDS on the same. Many believe that NFTs are digital goods and not currencies like crypto. Therefore they should be treated differently for taxation purposes.
“In the future, we will see all stakeholders in the sports ecosystem - from athletes to leagues, boards to sports fans unlock and monetize value that they never knew existed by creating monetisation opportunities by tokenizing historic moments in sports, sports player cards, and more with NFTs. Through phenomenal players like Rario and their portfolio of 600 players and five leagues, sports fans will be able to own notable pieces of sports,” Harsh Jain said at the virtual event as reported by economic times.
Jain voiced the fact that companies like TopShots and Sorare were able to drive the NFT sales to about $2 billion even though they only have a million users globally. He believes that India has the potential to become the world’s largest NFT industry as it has the most number of sports enthusiasts globally. Dream11 itself has a user base of about 140 million.