Microsoft explores funding in Indian gaming platform Zupee • TechCrunch

Microsoft has held conversations to spend money on the Indian play-to-earn gaming platform Zupee in latest weeks and proposed to doubtlessly lead a funding spherical of over $100 million, two individuals aware of the matter advised TechCrunch, the newest in a sequence of bets from the cloud providers large to broaden its enterprise in the important thing abroad market.

The 2 corporations haven’t reached an settlement and there’s a affordable probability the deal is not going to materialize, the individuals cautioned. A crew inside Microsoft has expressed apprehension about optics round betting and suggested the worldwide tech large to steer away from the deal, an individual briefed on the main points mentioned.

Zupee declined to remark. Microsoft didn’t reply to a request for remark late final month. Like many different startups, including Oyo, by which Microsoft has invested in India, the Zupee deal sought to have the startup use Azure and different Microsoft cloud providers as a part of the deal, two individuals aware of the matter mentioned.

The New Delhi-headquartered Zupee — which has raised over $120 million up to now, together with about $100 million in its Sequence B spherical that it closed in January this yr — operates what it describes as a “skill-based informal gaming” platform. The agency, which was final valued at $600 million, has garnered over 70 million downloads throughout board video games corresponding to ludo, snakes and ladder, and enjoying playing cards and carrom.

In January, it shaped what it described as a “first-of-its-kind strategic” partnership with Jio Platforms, India’s largest telecom operator with over 420 million subscribers. The 2 corporations will work to construct an “ecosystem that can facilitate quicker and extra environment friendly improvement and distribution of services and products,” Zupee mentioned in a press launch earlier.

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