Centre Court Capital Launches INR 350 Crore Fund Targeting Sports & Gaming Sector

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With the rise of technology-driven solutions in sports and gaming, there is a growing need for funding to support these innovations. This sector holds huge growth potential, yet startups often face challenges in securing funding tailored to their industry-specific requirements. Recognizing these challenges, Centre Court Capital has launched its maiden INR 350 crore fund to bridge the gap between ideas and growth in the sports and gaming industry of India.

This Category II AIF, registered with SEBI, has already secured INR 200 crore in commitments from prominent investors and top-tier athletes. The main investor leading this venture is the Sajjan Jindal Family Trust, with Parth Jindal in charge. They are going to collaborate with other notable entities like the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), PremjiInvest, USK Capital, and other well-known corporate investors in the sports industry such as GMR Sports and SG Sports.

Mustafa Ghouse is the one leading Centre Court Capital and is a well-known figure in the sports industry. He was previously the CEO of JSW Sports and has achieved notable milestones like winning an Asian Games Bronze medal and being a part of the Indian Davis Cup team. Additionally, Ghouse has also played a key role in establishing the Inspire Institute of Sport, India’s top Olympic training facility, and has experience in managing teams and acquisitions in leagues such as IPL, ISL, and PKL.

Founder Mustafa Ghouse
Founder Mustafa Ghouse

Mustafa Ghouse, Founder and General Partner of Centre Court Capital, said, “The sports and gaming sectors are experiencing unprecedented growth in the country. Tech is dominating the narrative of how sport is played and consumed, and we want to be at the forefront of this revolution. We have seen a tremendous rise in both public and private investment in Sports, which has more than quadrupled since 2020. As a result, we’re seeing an acceleration in the number of start-ups that are building from India for India and the world.”

Alongside Ghouse is Alok Samtaney, who has previously worked as an Investment Director at TVS Capital and Sabre Partners with over 15 years of expertise. In an interview, Ghouse said the fund aims to lead India’s sports and gaming revolution. The investment in sports has grown rapidly, more than four times since 2020, and Centre Court Capital plans to support this growth by focusing on new startups in the sector.

They will be investing INR 8 to 24 crore in early-stage ventures while reserving 40-50% of their funds for future investments, showing their commitment to long-term success. Moreover, to attract global investors, Centre Court Capital is launching a fund in GIFT City, opening doors for international partnerships.

“Adding to that, with 396 million gamers, we’re the 2nd largest population of gamers in the world and the gaming sector is poised to grow at a 5-year CAGR of 21%,” Mustafa Ghouse added.

Centre Court Capital is a venture capital firm that specializes in supporting startups at the forefront of innovation in three key areas: sports, fitness & wellness, and eSports & gaming. The firm aims to support the startup ecosystem in India where sports and gaming industries flourish.

The firm invests in startups that are leading the way in sports technology, providing advanced data insights for athletes, engaging fans through immersive experiences, and supporting sports leagues and franchises. Moreover, Centre Court Capital supports startups focused on fitness and wellness solutions including innovations in hybrid fitness programs, monitoring technologies, mental health apps, nutrition tools, and overall wellbeing platforms.

Additionally, the firm backs game developers, publishers, eSports companies, and technologies supporting these industries, such as platforms, streaming services, and community-building initiatives.

Mustafa Ghouse is a well-known figure in the sports industry, known for his impressive journey from being a professional tennis player to the founder of Centre Court Capital. He has played a significant role in shaping India’s sporting landscape, particularly during his time as the former CEO of JSW Sports. Starting his career as a tennis player, Mustafa competed internationally and represented India in tournaments like the Asian Games and Davis Cup. His experiences alongside players such as Mahesh Bhupati and Leander Paes have given him valuable insights into the world of sports.

After his successful career as an athlete, Mustafa ventured into sports management. As the CEO of JSW Sports, he played a crucial role in the organization’s growth. Under his leadership, JSW Sports initiated various programs and initiatives to support athletes across different sports. Additionally, in his efforts to advance sports in India, Mustafa has partnered with organizations such as Sporjo.

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