India – PlayUp launches Draftstars in IndiaBy Phil - 28 November 2018
Draftstars, one of Australia’s most recognised fantasy sports platforms, has been launched in one of the fastest growing fantasy sports markets in the world; India.
Draftstars India drew 2300 registrations in its first week of operation, with tens of thousands of Rupees being paid out in its initial few days.
It marks the first time the pay-to-play fantasy sports platform has expanded outside of Australia. Draftstars Australia made headlines last month after paying out the biggest fantasy sports prize pool in Australian history following the AFL Grand Final, with over $112,000 in winnings awarded to hundreds of competitors, including $10,000 to winner JRod78.
PlayUp Ltd, the parent company to Draftstars, has long held a strong Indian audience, where it was the 4th ranked sport-related website in October 2018. India is renowned for its enthusiastic sporting population, something that has reflected the rapid growth of fantasy sports in the country.
A recent report commissioned by the Indian Federation of Sports Gaming (IFSG) demonstrated the exploding popularity of skill-based betting in the country. India currently has more than 20 million fantasy sports users, a number expected to grow to 100 million users by 2020. The report also showed that a staggering 89 percent of users play fantasy sports at least once a month.
The bursting popularity of fantasy sports has given rise to an increase in sporting leagues in the country. In the last five years eight new sporting leagues have been launched, including the Indian Super League (ISL), Pro Kabaddi League (PKL), Premier Badminton League (PBL), Hockey India League (HIL) and International Tennis Premier League (ITPL).
“The Indian market is the fastest-growing fantasy sports market in the world,” said Draftstars India Operations Administrator, Venkatesh Iyengar.
“Given PlayUp’s strong reputation and brand in the country it was a natural decision to introduce another of our most popular pay-to-play fantasy sport platforms, Draftstars.”
Draftstars India currently has international and domestic cricket challenges, as well as football (soccer). Plans are in place to introduce Kabaddi and Basketball by years end.
Both the Australian and Indian branches of Draftstars are expected to integrate the PlayChip token, the exclusive cryptocurrency of PlayUp’s gaming ecosystem, in Q1 2019. The PlayChip will be an alternative to direct cash betting, offering users instant withdrawals, higher security and transparency, and provably fair betting.
The PlayChip is currently in use on the PlayUp fantasy sport and PlayUp Bet platforms, where it is currently pegged to a value of US$0.01. On December 19th the PlayChip will migrate to the blockchain and be available for purchase via the PlayXchange, the native exchange for the token. PlayChips can be purchased using credit card, Bitcoin or Ethereum, and will be available for use on the PlayUp fantasy sport platform immediately.