Rooter, a content platform for gaming and esports, secured $16 million in a growth funding round, with Lightbox, an existing investor, leading the investment.
The funding consisted of 80% equity and 20% debt, according to Piyush Kumar, the founder, and CEO of Rooter, in an interview with ETtech.
In addition to Lightbox, Rooter’s growth funding round attracted new investors such as Trifecta Capital, Pivot Ventures, Baldota Family Office, and Global Play Media, among others. The roster of existing investors includes Duane Park Ventures, LeAD Sports & Health Tech Partners, and ADvantage VC.
“We need to continue growing the revenue. Second, we need to continue creating a very strong creator ecosystem, so we need to invest in technology to make more and more creators into gaming. Third, we will continue to invest in technology to better the experience of personalization, make stronger recommendation engines, and so on. Fourth is that in the next 12 to 18 months, we want to scale our user revenue contribution on overall revenue,” Kumar said.
Rooter initially began as a platform designed to engage sports fans, but in 2020 it changed its focus to game streaming after failing to discover a suitable product-market fit. Before the present funding round, the company successfully secured $30 million in funding, as per reported by The Economic Times.
“In India’s fast-growing gaming content space, Rooter has set strong benchmarks on how to strike the balance between growth and operational sustainability – establishing rapid scale while maintaining a healthy balance sheet and strong unit economics,” Sid Talwar, partner, Lightbox said.
Rooter’s assortment of content comprises live streams, short-form content, and videos encompassing more than 10 Indian languages. Notably, approximately 90% of Rooter’s revenue is derived from brand advertisements, featuring prominent names such as McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, H&M, and Adidas. The remaining revenue stream originates from direct users who engage with Rooter’s internal app store, which employs a dedicated currency system for gifting purposes.
Abhishek Gupta, Partner, Trifecta Capital, added, “We particularly like how Rooter has placed itself at the intersection of the needs of brands, streamers, and viewers in the highly dynamic gaming content and esports streaming category they operate in, and the success they have found in suitably monetizing these avenues.”
India’s top streaming platform for video games and esports is called Rooter. It unites the nation’s community of gamers by straddling the junction of two significant macro trends: gaming and content.