In the 90s, when people were not that much familiar with the internet, he thought to start a gaming company. Nobody knew the concept of a startup at that time. Initially, it was a difficult journey. He lost initial investment as well. Yes, we are talking about the first gaming startup of India- Nazara Technologies. Nitish Mittersain, the founder of Nazara, did not leave any stone unturned for making his startup successful.
After two decades, Nazara became the first Indian gaming company to start its IPO this week. And, guess what, the opening of IPO broke few records. It became the third most subscribed IPO having a value of over Rs 200 crore.
Interesting Journey of Nazara Technologies
By birth, Nitish is a Marwari. In India, Marwari means that you have a business in your blood. He rightly proved it. Initially, he helped his father in his textile business. But, it did not motivate him much. He completed his undergraduate degree in Commerce and then studied for an MBA.
Gaming was his first love. Can you imagine that he developed his first game at the age of 7? He is continuing the same passion after 33 years also.
He is a motivation for the young generation who want to convert their passion into a business. Today, you find many gaming startups. The scenario in the 1990s was different. People were surprised about how he thought about gaming while there is no infrastructure for that.
In his college days, he was lucky to meet Shammi Kapoor, a 1960s youth icon and a Bollywood legend. Kapoor helped him to refine his business idea. He was very enthusiastic about the internet and technology. Bollywood legend also helped him to combine gaming with entertainment.
Nitish dedicates his initial business journey to Shammi Kapoor. He said that he was the one who understood my vision and refined it for the betterment. They both were in touch until Shammi Kapoor died a few years ago.
Though the initial gaming journey was difficult, Nazara got the first-mover advantage as well. The company started building relationships with mobile manufacturers for mobile gaming.
Nitish was missing the publicity of Nazara. In 2004, he started looking for better options. In India, cricket is treated as a religion and in 2004, Sachin has declared the God of cricket. Nazara started following Sachin for the partnership. Finally, Sachin came on board with Nazara.
From that time onwards, Nazara started growing. It got associated with key players like Royal Challengers Banglore, the IPL franchise, and Hrithik Roshan. Nazara did not stop here. It further strengthened its global network with a partnership with global gaming giant Electronic Arts.
Here comes the big break. Westbridge Capital showed an investment interest in Nazara. It is interesting to know that Nitish did not know anything about Venture Capital at that time. He raised funds from other firms as well. He invested the money with more responsibility so that investors will get better returns.
He started building his team. The same team is with him for the last decade. The company did not establish any fancy HR policies. It helped the company to gain employees’ trust.
Nitish found a valuable partner in Manish Agarwal. He initially worked as CEO of Nazara when Nitish was Managing Director. Everyone was surprised with Nitish’s move to handover the major operations to an outsider. It was a turning point for the firm. Manish helped Nazara in building a reliable team and expanded the business globally. Currently, Nazara has a strong presence in 60+ countries.
Current Status of Nazara Technologies
Nazara has started his IPO this week. Recent online sports growth helped Nazara’s IPO to get positive feedback from the analysts. Most of the reputed brokerage firms gave thumbs up to Nazara IPO. It was subscribed 175 times on last day of offering.
It recorded Rs 248 crore revenue in FY2020. It has a plan to achieve Rs 470 crore revenue in FY2021. It has 21 subsidiaries. A wide presence in Africa, North America, India, and the Middle East makes it the leader in the online gaming industry worldwide.
Financial support from the stock guru Rakesh Jhunjhunwala establishes its reputation further. The company has developed more than 1021 android games. Recent growth in the export industry makes sure that Nazara will play a key role in future gaming.