Octro

Teen Patti creator Octro Games is looking to open up its platform through an entrepreneur-in-residence programme and help game developers create and co-launch mobile games. Currently, Octro Games has shortlisted and is in advanced discussions with two developers for the programme. They will get access to the company’s back-end technology and financial support.

“Essentially the idea came up due the fact that gaming is a super creative industry and there’s lots of creative talent out there and we are better at technology. If you look at our games, it succeeded because of the back-end technology and because of online synchronous sessions. That is what we focus on and we want to get more and more creative people joining us and give them infrastructure support – be it financial, technical etc,” Vaibhav Gupta, VP for business operations at Octro, told MediaNama. “We could give that support and then eventually co-develop a game and launch it and the entrepreneur gets a share of the revenue,” he added.

Octro, whose most successful games are in the cards and casinos genre, is looking to diversify into other game genres with the programme. “In the cards and casinos section we’re already leaders. But if someone comes up with an exciting idea and a different genre of games, that would be more interesting,” Gupta added.

Octro’s top-selling game Teen Patti is similar to to Zynga Poker and is available for iOS and Android. What makes these games so popular is that you get to play against real people including your friends as opposed to bots and the company claims it has an active user base of 2 million. Octro was started by Saurabh Aggarwal as a VoIP company in 2006, but pivoted to games at some stage. There are no advertisements in their games and Octro monetizes the game through in-app transactions. The company received Series A round of funding of $15 million from Sequoia Capital in June last year.

The company will also be launching two new games over the next week: Teen Patti Live (a new iteration of their existing game) and Carrom Live (based on the board game).

Octro competes against companies such as Adda52 and Mango Games. While Adda52 offers poker and rummy, Mango Games, which raised an undisclosed amount of funding earlier this year, offers rummy games. Bangalore-based Bash Gaming was acquired by GSN Games for $160 million earlier this year.

Disclosure: MediaNama founder Nikhil Pahwa’s cousin Gaurav Banga sits on the board of Octro.