Aneesh Aravind expressed his viewpoints during the session titled ‘King Kong: The multi-billion-dollar world of gaming. And why India is still playing catch-up’ of the India Today Conclave 2021.
Aneesh Aravind, the Head of Publishing, India Krafton on Friday expressed his belief that the inclusion of esports as a part of the Asian Games will certainly add a lot of legitimacy to the gaming industry. Aravind stated the same during the India Today Conclave 2021 during the session titled ‘King Kong: The multi-billion-dollar world of gaming. And why India is still playing catch-up’. The other members of the discussion were Prasad Mangipudi, Managing Director, Sportzlive; Mortal, Esports Athlete; Anish Kapoor, CEO, Infinix Mobiles India.
“When Krafton decided to do publishing in India, we looked at what the market is, where it is going to grow, and we also looked at the player base that was here. So we said that we are going to launch BGMI and that took a bit of time and players went really clamouring. When we released it, it was phenomenal. Within a week, we were able to get 40 million downloads and 60 million DAU. More than the numbers, what we saw was the gamers’ passion. So, we looked at the passion and that was exactly what we were looking to build our product towards,” said Aravind as quoted by India Today.
“They have announced the eight games that will be considered medal events in the Asian Games, and the Olympics Committee and the Asian Games Federation are figuring out a format and logistics as to how this should be conducted. Esports being a part of the Asian Games certainly adds a lot of legitimacy. Not just for the games that are participating but for the entire video game industry. Certainly, participating and competing for your country is a great feeling,” he added.
Naman Mathur who is well known by the moniker Mortal, went on to discuss his journey and transformation into an Esports athlete.
“The transition has always been upwards and the experience has been great. I was doing BCom and wanted to be a company secretary while doing LLB. I was also uploading videos on YouTube side by side just like any other people. One of those videos went viral and people started recognising the person as Mortal. Naman Mathur was not even in the picture. PUBG made me viral. Currently, it is BGMI. The transition was not something that I had in my hand. My dad passed away when I was 4 and my mom was super happy with the first income that I made, which was 1 lakh 4 thousand rupees. She gave me 1 year’s time to figure out things. Within a few months’ time, she was like ‘beta ab yahi karlo,” he stated.
Prasad Mangipudi further discussed the watershed moment in gaming.
“Having spent over 6 years in the traditional sports ecosystem. There is a certain segment of people who are not interested in traditional sports. When India Today came to us with this offer, it was irresistible. When an iconic brand like India Today comes on board, we know this a tipping point. I think now the industry is really going to explode. This is a sport where we can be producing global champions only in the shortest period of time. This ecosystem is highly democratized. This is the new age sport,” he stated.