Saturday, 2024 May 25

Israel’s Overwolf raises USD 75 million to grow in-game creator ecosystem

Israeli gaming platform Overwolf announced on Wednesday that it has raised USD 75 million in a Series D round led by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. Previous investors, including Griffin Gaming Partners, Insight Partners, Intel Capital, Liberty Technology Venture Capital, and Marker LLC also participated in the round.

Founded in 2009, Overwolf is a platform that enables users to build, distribute, and monetize in-game apps and mods.

The funding will be used to strengthen and grow its in-game creator ecosystem, primarily its UGC-as-a-service solution CurseForge Core, which enables game studios, IP owners, and in-game creators to prosper with game creations, Overwolf said in a statement. UGC stands for user-generated content.

Overwolf supports both in-game creators and game studios in facilitating community-created experiences via CurseForge Core, according to the company. The CurseForge Core platform, which was launched in March, provides a software development kit for game developers to easily build and integrate mods into existing and new games. The platform also provides an in-game marketplace where users can discover, download, and install approved player-created content without leaving the game.

Overwolf believes that the industry is entering a “new era of gaming” led by community-created experiences that are key to extending games’ longevity and player satisfaction. This era is fueled by in-game creators and mod authors, the company said in a press release.

“The biggest social platforms today, including TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram, are heavily driven by creators who generate content for friends, family, and the community. As games continue to evolve into social networks, creators and user-generated content will play an equally important role,” said Jonathan Lai, partner at Andreessen Horowitz.

“Overwolf’s platform makes it possible for any player to become a co-creator of their favorite game thanks to a robust development engine, an app store for distribution, and monetization tools for creators to earn a living from their work,” Lai added.

Over 87,000 creators are already using the Overwolf framework, while more than 20 million gamers use Overwolf’s products each month, according to the company.

In 2021, Overwolf expects to pay out USD 29 million to in-game creators, nearly three times the amount distributed last year. Earlier this year, the company deployed the Overwolf Creators Fund, a USD 50 million fund solely dedicated to supporting the work and projects of in-game app creators, mod authors, as well as game studios that plan to integrate mods into new titles.

“Community-created experiences are the future of gaming. No single game studio can compete with the speed of execution and sheer creativity of a passionate community. Instead of resisting community creations, we have seen a shift in perception, with leading game studios starting to embrace the value that these creators bring to the community and to the studio itself,” said Overwolf co-founder and CEO, Uri Marchand.

“It is an honor to be able to provide the framework, tools, and expertise to usher in this new era of community creation,” Uri added.

The article was originally published by NoCamels, a leading news website covering breakthrough innovation from Israel for a global audience.


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