Carry1st has raised $6 million in funding for its mobile game publishing platform targeted at the untapped potential of the African market.
Africa has around 1.1 billion members of the Millennial and Generation Z groups, who are big technology adopters. It’s the fastest-growing region for mobile game downloads, according to mobile insights firm App Annie. And so it’s about time the game venture capital boom came to Africa.
Despite this potential, international and regional studios often find it difficult make money in Africa because of fragmented and unresolved distribution and digital payments ecosystems. This is a very interesting development to me, as I’ve always wondered how Africa can eventually follow in the footsteps of big regions such as China and India when it comes to the adoption and monetization of mobile games.
Carry1st says it provides a full publishing solution, handling distribution, localization, user acquisition, marketing, customer experience, and monetization for its partners. Carry1st’s Pay1st platform is an embedded fintech solution that consolidates popular payment methods in six African countries, allowing customers to pay in their preferred way.
“We essentially just got really inspired by some of the dominant demographic trends on the continent,” said Lucy Hoffman, the chief operating officer at Carry1st, in an interview with GamesBeat. “There are over a billion Gen Z and Millennials. Given the influx of cheap smartphones from China, people are coming online for the first time. They’re bypassing laptops, PCs, and consoles and and just going mobile-first. And so we thought it was a really interesting opportunity to get involved in the mobile space, as the cost of data is coming down.”