What Everyone Ought To Know About Fantasy Games Startups In India

Time and again, an app comes into play that floods up the market share. Online Fantasy Sports Gaming has become more common in the last 2 decades and shockingly it has secured top gear in India. Because, by creating your own imaginary team, if you could earn some real money, then, why not?

One gaming app hit the market then, BAM! There will number of apps after it, competing each other, as this is how app market works. From nearly 2 decades, it has been observed that although online fantasy sports startups has had a magnificent transformation but then also we all have witnessed their stupendous growth since the beginning of this new era of gaming. Online fantasy sports, known as e-sports, have increased from seven times in 2016- 2018 to 25 times in June 2016- February 2019. Its crystal clear that online fantasy sports startups have been a boon to all of the gamers and even, non-gamers too.


Prominent players (M.S. Dhoni , Virat Kohli) in fantasy sports such as Dream11, My Team11,  Halaplay, 11 Wickets, Starpick and Fantain have partnered with official sports leagues (IPL, Test Matches, Kabaddi leagues) as their fantasy sports game partner. This have helped a lot to keep up with their credibility of their apps and websites.

"This could imply that fantasy sports platforms could potentially be considered as a means for earning increaments by comparatively lower income groups, leaing to an increased engagement with the platform"    :  KPMG-IFSG report

Indian fantasy gaming industry has started to boom the startup culture. It has been obserevd that cricket sports are more loved in fantasy gaming than any other sports.

Fantasy sports have been surveyed with respect to two parameters:

1.Time Frequency

A report says that approximately 75% of the respondents play fantasy sports 3 times a week and  20% of the respondents reported playing more than five times a week.


Its observed fairly consistent in the age group of 18-24 and 25-36 with nearly 80% of the respondents playing 1-3 times a week, the 37-50 age group was seen to have a much higher engagement.  Nearly 50% of the respondents in the 37-50 age group reported playing fantasy game more than four times a week.

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It might be challenging that as the fantasy gaming gains the popularity, it becomes more and more competetive with much higher cash rewards at stake. This trend started with cricket coinciding with the incoming of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2008, now there is a long list of sports to choose from: football, hockey, kabaddi, carrom, pool, badminton, basketball, and more.

Here's a graph that delves into the category of sports played by gamers in online fantasy sports platforms across India in 2019.

Category of sports played by gamers in online fantasy sports platforms across India in 2019.
category of sports played by gamers

Indian fantasy gaming industry has started to boom the startup culture. It has been obserevd that cricket sports are more loved in fantasy gaming than any other sports.

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List of Online Fantasy Games in India

1. Dream 11

India got its first gaming unicorn - Dream11 - the Tencent-backed fantasy sports startup.  cricket with the magnificent chunk of popularity among all the sports in India, it evolved to be the first portal-based online game for fantasy sports in India. According to KPMG and Indian Federation of Sports Gaming (IFSG), Dream11 alone occupies more than 90% of fantasy sports market and so the sector assures its success inspires more entrepreneurs and startups to see fantasy gaming as a measurable business proposition.


Dream11 has given the chance to Indian sports fans for getting rewards on their sports knowledge. It became the first ever fantasy sports gaming which entered the “Unicorn Club”. A unicorn is a startup company valued at over $1 billion. The term came in light in 2013 by capitalist Aileen Lee, delved the mythical creature ‘unicorn’ to represent the statistical rarity of such successful ventures. India is home to 31 Unicorns today, with consumer service startups leading the charts.

Also Read: Dream11 - India's Best Fantasy Gaming Application

2. Halaplay


Halaplay is listed under Daily Fantasy Sports(DFS) gaming for users. It offers sports leagues for Cricket, Football and Kabaddi. Here, the player has to bet on some money and can win cash prizes. Founded by Saurav, Prateek Anand, Ananya Singhal and Aman Kesari with its launch operation held in January 2017. Nazara Technologies and Delta Corporation has funded the company.

3. MPL- Mobile Premier League

MPL- Mobile Premier League

MPL is a Banglore based e-sport platform launched in September 2018. Virat Kohli is the brand ambassador for this gaming company. It leads many other online gaming platform because players win reward prize by playing in 30+ games and it covers 4 crore players across India. Games like pool, ludo, goride, pro cricket, fruit chop, crossing gaps, and many more are available here. Amazingly, tournaments and events are organised where you can compete and win, then a certain amount gets added in your wallet.

4. Cricplay


With a tagline “Ab India Khelega” , Gautam Gambhir have conquered hearts of million cricket fans in India. It is one of the latest online fantasy gaming apps which is free. It has grown a lot in a short span of time with 6 million + App Download. The free fantasy game comes with three things i.e. ‘Fantasy Leagues’, ‘Challengers Leagues’, and ‘Daily Predictions’.

5. Fanfight


Fanfight is a fantasy sports league game founded by Akhil Suhag in May 2016 which hosts for both cricket and football. With 6 million downloads, you pick a fixture from a game centre and choose a cash contest from listed items. Select the best 11 and win. Fanfight is a Silver member of FIFS (Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports).

6. 11 Wickets.com

11 Wickets.com

11 wickets is India’s exponentially growing fantasy sports game which hosts in sports category, particularly for the cricket and football fans in India. It was founded in 2018, further owned and operated by Ability Games Pvt. Ltd. Ability Games is a research and game development company focused on cutting-edge technologies. It is one of the pioneer companies in the field of gaming and development.

7. Zapak


Zapak is an online gaming website which provides browser games on a global level. It is launched in 2006 and promoted by one of the leading industries of Anil Ambani's Reliance Big Entertainment. This company has become one of the re-known gaming companies in India. It has drawn quite a significant interests of its users in casual games, and massively multiplayer online games.

8. BalleBaazi


BalleBaazi.com was co-founded in January 2018 by Navkiran Singh, Saurabh Chopra, and Puneet Dua.  It launched tournaments for 20-20 cricket competition & Tournaments in 2018. BalleBaazi accumulated a user base of around 400,000 active users within 12 months after its launch. BalleBaazi announced the famous Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh as its brand ambassador. BalleBaazi lets participants create their own virtual team of real cricket players and earn points based on the performance of these players in real matches. It offers both free and paid contests. A user has to pay a certain fee to participate in a contest and can win cash.

9. MyTeam11


My team 11 is a leading platform for online fantasy sports gaming. It was launched in 2016 by Vinit Godara and Sanjit Sihag. It is having a user base of 15 million and is a well known member of a Platinum member of FIFS (Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports). MyTeam 11 offers five major sports which are Cricket, Baseball, Football, Basketball, and handball.

10. Rummy Circle

Rummy Circle

Rummy Circle is amongst the most popular games in India. It's easy, fun and packed with a healthy dose of challenge that will keep you coming back for more. Fast gameplay, secure platform and safe transactions along with international standards of gameplay, makes us amongst India's most popular gaming websites.

Digitalization of the globe has been the key contributor behind this growth story of online fanatsy gaming. With the growing use of smartphones,  improved bandwidth of internet access, low latency, improved screen size and features of gadgets has increased the access to the games launched by these companies.  This has been the paradigmatic shift of the public interest towards fantasy gaming.

It's like a wide-open mouth situation that all of these fantasy gaming were home-grown startups in India which have now transformed into some of the most popular online fantasy gaming platforms.

It’s pretty obvious that rapid adoption of fantasy sports has been listed in reasons below:

Sequence of sports league and Premium partnerships of fantasy sports league
adoption of fantasy sports

1.Sequence of sports league

A large population in India has a special space in heart for the sports gaming, and sports leagues for cricket, including those for kabaddi, football, wrestling and volleyball.


Exponential growth in terms of its digital infrastructure. Growing affordability of smartphones, expansion of the internet user base and plummeting data price are resulting in such growth.

3. Increased Investor interest

E-sports leaders from Tencent to Nazara are also investing in fantasy sports gaming and the plus point is is that in a diverse country like india , they are bringing up the content in religious language too.

4.Premium partnerships of fantasy sports league

Sports players like M.S. Dhoni , Virat Kohi, Hardik Pandaya have been promoting these online fantasy sports in cricket. Fantasy Sports gaming helped sports fans to play fantasy games. The fan base has also helped gain the popularity in these types of sports. It is said that as ‘a game of skill’ and not as a ‘game of luck’.

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About Avantika Bhardwaj

  • New Delhi, India