Mauj Mobile, the part of People Group, is a company focussed on delivering great games and creating engaging experiences for the Mobile users. The company was incorporated in 2003 with a vision to empower consumers by providing entertainment and information via mobile phone, and specifically on Mobile Internet Platforms.
With offices in Mumbai, Milan, London and New York; Mauj Mobile reaches over 20 million of mobile customers every month across 100 countries.
Striking Services Propounded
Mauj Mobile focuses on two main businesses, Premium Content Distribution and Application Store.
The Premium Content Distribution vertical focuses on providing great monetisation of premium content for content owners to customers in India. Mauj brings together their expertise in user engagement and technology to bring innovative entertainment and information to the end user on mobile. They take these products to market both through the operator channel as well as through Direct to Consumer models.
The Application Store vertical, through mobango.com, is one of the world’s largest free mobile application and content stores. Mobango is the world’s first Social Application store and offers over 1 million pieces of apps, games and content for free download to end users in over 100 countries. It delivers more than a million downloads a day and is a proven distribution platform for all major application owners in the world.
The key capabilities that support both the above business areas are Mauj’s core technology platforms that they have built over the last few years, which include a robust Applications Discovery and Deployment Platform (ADDM), the Billing and subscription management engines, and tools to rapidly build and manage scaled destinations and store fronts on mobile internet platforms.
The Gaming Ecosystem
According to team Mauj, the gaming ecosystem mainly consists of five key players and each of them offers a distinct value to the gaming ecosystem as a whole.
Game developers: are the actual guys who create the game from scratch.
Publishers: Game publishers work with the developers to take their games to market and drive game downloads and revenues. They also support the developer from a game production, marketing and testing standpoint.
Distribution platforms: These are the consumer-facing platforms where the actual game discovery and downloads happen. Monetization/ Payment channels: These are the platforms that facilitate game monetization, either via in-game purchases through multiple payment mechanisms like direct consumer billing using credit/ debit cards, carrier billing, etc. and ad platforms that can offer the developers the opportunity to monetize their game engagement.
The role that Mauj plays in this ecosystem is one of a unique publisher for great quality games, with its own scaled-up distribution platforms for both free and premium games and offers great monetization opportunities for the game developers through its robust carrier billing APIs. On the consumer side, Mauj has millions of engaged gaming users across platforms that see tremendous value in the curated gaming content that Mauj offers.
Given the role that Mauj plays pans across the ecosystem, being a publisher with a distribution and monetization platform, there are multiple technical and content areas where it has developed expertise in.
One of the key responsibilities that they have is from a content standpoint, the goal being to ensure their gaming consumers not only have access to the best gaming content on their platforms, but also the content is sanitized, updated, tested and supported by the appropriate meta-data, collaterals to ensure discovery of the same and provide consumers with enough decision-making tools like reviews and ratings, expert opinions, videos, etc.
From the technology perspective, Mauj ensures that they operate the most stable and scalable platforms both for their consumers and developers. Their distribution and monetization platforms and APIs are powered by highly scalable infrastructure that can manage very high peak loads at any time. They constantly keep innovating on the distribution and content delivery side to strive for higher download completion rates for all their content.
Apart from that, the platforms have a strong layer of analytics that powers the business insights, consumer understanding algorithms and developer dashboards. These also empower their reporting, billing and collection systems across Mauj’s billing partners and drive their further pay-outs, etc.
Team Mauj says that their most challenging project on the gaming side is the on-going development of their gaming focused distribution platform in Gamesbond, which would exist in both a free and premium mode. As an alternate game downloads and distribution platform, it directly competes with the Google Play Store which is the de-facto download destination for all Android devices.
Given the backdrop of the Google Play Store, they have the challenge of continuously innovating on content discovery and personalization to ensure that they are able to offer the most relevant and personalized gaming content to their gaming consumers. This also means development and implementation of complex content discovery algorithms and recommendations that will aid discovery for their users.
Apart from this, since the Android ecosystem does not extend certain privileges to alternate app stores like the ones that Google Play Store has, there are significant technology challenges on download delivery and completion that they are continuously trying to address. Mauj has worked on new features like download manager and multi-threaded download delivery to solve some of these issues.
The Exuberant Leader of Mauj
The trailblazer behind Mauj Mobile is Badri Sanjeevi who is the Co-Founder and CEO of Mauj Mobile. Mr. Sanjeevi, having more than two decades of experience leads the Mauj Mobile and Mobango teams on their success path working closely with telecom operators, media companies and mobile app developers.
Mr. Sanjeevi has acquired his bachelor’s degree from Madras University in 1994, where he was awarded the Best Student title. He is a Chartered Accountant, having cleared all exams in All India rank-holders list and a Cost Accountant (equivalent of CIMA – UK). He has also completed his MBA from INSEAD Business School, France in 2001. He started his career with Arthur Andersen in India and went on to work with leading organizations like Deutsche Bank Telecoms Investment Banking in London, T-Mobile with their Strategy team and Deloitte Media Strategy Consulting in London. He returned to India in 2008 to join the People Group.
He is the winner of the prominent award, “Top 100 CFO in India for Impact on Strategy” “Red under his leadership, Mauj has won “Red Herring European Innovation Award, 2012” for innovative products and “mBillionth Award” for innovative products for developing countries.
Unique Approach towards Problems
Aside of the strong platforms that they’ve built for their gaming consumers and developers, they believe their key strength is the passion that the people have for gaming and their processes geared towards surfacing only the best games for their consumers.
As a distribution platform, one of the key consumer problems that Mauj is constantly trying to solve for the users is “Discovery”, which requires them to have a twin-pronged approach:
An automated/algorithm driven content matching/discovery mechanisms which ensure the best and appropriate content surfaces for a specific gamer
A strong curation process that ensures that even the algorithms are constantly fed with the strong tacit knowledge that lies within their strong editorial teams who understand what makes a great game.
Dazzling Future Outlook
From a future standpoint, a couple of focus areas where Mauj is aggressively building capability are:
International operations: The key international geographies that they are entering, and will drive the overall top line and profitability. Some of the potential markets in this context would be some countries in South East Asia & Latin America that are already evolved gaming markets.
Publishing capabilities: Mauj is working towards building comprehensive publishing capabilities for selected games, across platforms like Google Play and all other 3rd party platforms, OEMs, etc. This will strategically help them expand their network of games both from the demand and supply standpoint. This will also help them have a closer working relationship with a set of developers, help them improve their games and market them better.
Gargantuan Base of Clientele
For the clientele is largely the 20,000+ base of game developers, big and small, that are associated with Mauj and value them for the benefits they offer as a monetization, distribution and publishing partner.
In the recent times, there have been some very promising game developers, both Indian and international, like Super Sike games, Zabuza labs, Moonfrog games, Gp-imports, Madras games and UnderDOGs gaming studios, to name a few, who have found tremendous value in publishing their games on Mauj’s platforms.