Technology-focused venture capital firm Kalaari Capital has early-stage invested $1.5 million in a seed funding round in a Delhi-based gaming and Web 3.0 upskilling platform – Outscal. Founded by Mayank Grover, the startup helps professionals and students find jobs with global gaming companies and launch their businesses.
“With over 250 enrolled students and 100+ game development studios as recruiting partners, Outscal is enabling many new careers in the game industry. Excited to partner with Mayank Grover and his team as they face one of the greatest challenges in the gaming industry: the shortage of technical talent,” said Vani Kola, MD at Kalaari Capital. Kalaari’s other major investments include Dream11, POPxo, GoSwift, and Guardian.
Outscal says that a large proportion of the candidates who signed up for the game development programs and landed jobs in the game industry had no previous coding experience; many had mechanical, chemical, and even humanities backgrounds. “We are also working with more than 100 gaming studios in India to meet their talent needs,” said an Outscal statement.
Startup founder Grover said of more than 5,000 technical colleges in India that there is a lack of structured programs in game development that match the needs of the industry. “So companies end up either having vacancies open for months or hiring talent first and then dedicating resources to their upskilling. We are bridging this gap,” he added. Mayank had previously worked with game studios such as Electronic Arts, Kixeye, DeNA and Junglee Games in the US and India.
Outscal’s Game Academy offers two core products. The first product is for companies or studios looking for talent. The second core offer is for students and professionals who want to retrain, start or further their career in the game industry.
Outscal partners with more than 100 companies, including PTW, GSN Games and startups such as nCore Games, LILA Games and Playshifu. “Normally, we expect 20% of our candidates to reach the final stage of the hiring process, numbers that are usually unheard of. Our secret sauce is in the evaluation engine that allows us to research talent at scale,” the company claims.
Globally, the gaming market is expected to exceed $230 billion by 2022. Games accounted for just 6.1% of global spending in the entertainment and media sector in 2017. By 2026, that share is expected to exceed 11%. While there is a huge demand for new gaming IPs, one of the biggest hurdles is a massive talent shortage.
About 250,000 jobs were generated annually in the global gaming industry, more than 50% of which are entry-level. In combination with Web 3, the number rises to 1.25 million jobs.