In a major marketing coup, Paytm First Games — the gaming subsidiary of homegrown digital financial services major Paytm — has signed up sporting legend Sachin Tendulkar as its brand ambassador, a move the startup hopes will inspire gaming enthusiasts to experience fantasy sports and expand its reach in smaller cities and towns.
As brand ambassador, Sachin will create awareness about fantasy sports, a virtual game where participants put together virtual teams of real players of a professional sport, and help Paytm First Games generate excitement around all fantasy sports, including fantasy cricket, kabaddi, football, and basketball.
As the Indian digital gaming industry, in particular fantasy sports, takes off, Paytm First Games is setting aside Rs 300 crore to invest in growing the market for fantasy sports and other online gaming events during this financial year, the company said.
“The icon of a billion cricket-loving Indians, Sachin would be instrumental in creating awareness about the exciting genre of fantasy sports in the country. Most of us have grown up watching the Master Blaster in action. By welcoming Sachin as brand ambassador, we wish to inspire mobile gaming enthusiasts to experience fantasy sports which are about tactics, strategic planning, and research,” Sudhanshu Gupta, COO, Paytm First Games, said.
Paytm First Games expects to feature more than 200 live events, including international and domestic cricket tournaments, and soccer leagues, on the Paytm First Games platform.
A recent survey by the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS) and Kantar on fantasy sports engagement in India showed that cricket, followed by football and kabaddi, are the most popular sport among fantasy sports.
“Cricket is an engaging sport, and we all tend to have opinions about the game – right from player selection to playing strategies. Paytm First Games will give fans the opportunity to don their thinking hats and experience the thrill of making the correct choices and getting their teams to win. I am happy to partner with Paytm First Games to enable cricket fans to engage more with the ever-popular game of cricket,” Sachin said.
Fantasy sports, where players apply research and strategy to engage with live sporting events, is the most popular sport among the 50-odd games that Paytm First Games offers. The platform also boasts engagement from over 80 million gaming enthusiasts, the majority of whom are from smaller cities and towns across India.
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