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The online casual gaming segment in India is projected to grow at a 29 percent Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) during FY21-25 to reach Rs 169 billion, according to a report by KPMG in India.

Currently, the segment stands at Rs 60 billion in FY21, accounting for 44 percent of the total online gaming revenues.

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Titled ‘Beyond the tipping point – A primer on Casual gaming in India’, the report said that by FY25, casual online gaming would be the largest sub-segment amongst the online gaming segment in India, contributing 58 percent to the overall revenues.

Growth would be led by a continued increase in consumption, robust brand interest and maturity of the Indian gamer in terms of consumer spends.

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The online gaming segment has grown at a rapid pace in the last 3-4 years and is now competing with traditional forms of entertainment for the share of time spent on media and entertainment in a day. While the Covid-19-induced lockdowns had an adverse impact on the economy and traditional segments of the M&E industry, online gaming as a segment got a leg up in terms of both consumption and partly, monetization.

This is evident from the fact that India had the highest game downloads in the casual mobile gaming sub-segment in the world (excluding China) in 2020, with Q1-Q3 2020 downloads standing at 7.3 billion, accounting for 17 per cent of the global mobile game downloads.

Further, the monthly active users for the top 100 mobile games and the time spent on online gaming, are higher by 10-15 percent post lockdown 2020, indicating the establishment of a new normal.

Gamers across demographics took to online gaming as a means to connect with family and friends, with the supply side also playing its part, in terms of multiple titles getting multiplayer features, with a social layer to them, to encourage group consumption, the report said.

With India experiencing a second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic currently, it is envisaged that the consumption of casual online gaming is likely to continue being robust, helped by the robust digital infrastructure that India has, and the continued investments by Indian and global developers and publishers in making world-class games available to the Indian gamer.

Satya Easwaran, Partner and Head of Technology, Media & Telecom, KPMG In India said: “Having seen rapid growth in the last five years on account of the growth in digital infrastructure in the country coupled with the availability of leading titles, India’s online gaming segment is now a serious business with India’s gaming market being overwhelmingly mobile first.”

Girish Menon, Partner and Head, Media and Entertainment, KPMG in India, said that the online casual gaming sub-segment in India has emerged as the largest in terms of consumption amongst overall online gaming, with close to 420 million gamers engaging in online casual gaming in FY21.

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