● The funding will fuel the development of core technology for skill-based matchmaking and enable the introduction of engaging racquet sports like tennis and table tennis
● With this investment, Nithin Kamath’s Rainmatter take the first important step of adding Sports to their portfolio and more importantly its potential to drive masses towards a sustainable active lifestyle
Bangalore- Oct 17, 2023 – Game Theory, a revolutionary brand that makes real sports more engaging, accessible and habit forming using technology, is excited to announce a significant milestone in its journey. The company has successfully secured $2 million in a Pre-Series A funding round, attracting investments from prominent names in the industry, including Nithin Kamath’s Rainmatter, Rohan Bopanna, WEH Ventures, Prequate Advisory, and notable angels, including Balakrishna Adiga.
The funds raised will be channelled towards continuing development of some of their first-in-the-world technology, building out skill-based matchmaking, establishing coaching products, and expanding the reach of smart sporting facilities across the country. Game Theory’s augmentation of technology that is integrated at the user and at the facility allows for increasing accessibility and stickiness in casual sports.
This funding represents a significant milestone for Game Theory and paves the way for the brand to achieve its vision of transforming how sports are experienced today. Their innovative approach helps people to bridge some critical barriers in playing sports regularly like finding equally skilled players or hassles of coordinating. Game Theory makes ‘play’ an important part of people’s lives with fitness becoming a by-product.
The underlying technology under development will use a ‘gamified’ experience to foster habit creation for users while providing a superior playing experience on-court/ on-field like automated scoring, game highlights and ‘pro-sports’-like stats using computer vision & artificial intelligence.
Game Theory’s Founder, Sudeep Kulkarni, expressed his excitement, saying, “At Game Theory, our mission is get people of all levels playing, by fostering a vibrant community that finds joy and camaraderie in sport. This funding milestone brings us one step closer to achieving that mission. Our technology will soon help people bring the “ultimate joy” of playing sports back into their lives”.
Game Theory aims to expand its reach by increasing the number of centers. In addition to existing sports such as badminton, swimming, and squash, the brand will soon introduce tennis, table tennis, and football. Some other fascinating sports and experiences, such as pickleball and paddle tennis or engagement experiences for users to experience new sports or existing sports in a brand new way.
“Our fully-integrated technology platform, with several first-in-the-worlds, will bring in interactive features like real-time score keeping, captivating video highlights, pro sports like stats and on-court matchmaking will enhance the overall experience for our users. This successful fundraising is just the beginning; it marks the beginning of how everyday sports can be transformed with technology. We extend our cheers (and heartfelt thanks) to all who’ve been part of this journey,” Sudeep further added.
Notably, the investment from Nithin Kamath’s Rainmatter marks their first venture into the sports industry, highlighting Game Theory’s potential to pioneer sports for health. This aligns well with Game Theory’s highly capital-efficient business model, which not only provides a strong foundation for scalability but also fosters mutually rewarding partnerships with facility owners.
Nithin Kamath, Founder of Rainmatter, reflects his perspective on Game Theory and their innovative approach: “One of the best ways to stay fit is to pick up and play a sport regularly. The problem is it’s hard to find locations to play regularly and match with similar skilled individuals. Game Theory is solving this problem by making sports accessible to Indians. Given our mission at Rainmatter to help Indians make healthier choices, we are excited to join the Game Theory team in this journey.”
Rohit Krishna, Partner at WEH Ventures, added, “We believe the next large consumer brand will be built in the services segment and we are ecstatic to be backing Sudeep & team to build the largest consumer sports brand in India. Sudeep is one of the most passionate founders I’ve met and he has a knack for understanding what consumers really want and then uses tech to provide delightful experiences.”
Pradyumna Nag, Partner at Prequate Advisory, expressed, “Sports has consistently proven to be one of the most resilient sectors and the emerging trend of ‘play for fitness’ is here to stay. Game Theory is built on an exceptional business model that makes sports accessible without drastically changing the underlying infrastructure. The real breakthrough though, is how Game Theory was able to reframe players as ‘users’ – stemming from their personal experiences”.
Prequate Advisory also acted as the sole strategic and financial advisor to Game Theory on this transaction.
Prior to this funding round, Game Theory had raised approx. $500k from Techstars and other notable angel investors in its angel round.