Industry Experts Give Thumbs Up To Nodwin-Comic Con Deal

Industry leaders state that Nodwin's acquisition of Comic Con India reiterates the importance of ‘experiences’ in connecting with consumers in a cluttered marketing landscape

The year 2024 has kicked off on a busy note for the gaming and experiential sectors with, Nodwin Gaming’s (part of Nazara Technologies), move to acquire Comic Con India. Nodwin has procured a 100 per cent stake in Comic Con India for a sum of Rs 55 crore. The transaction which aims to strengthen Nodwin Gaming’s focus on the experiential side via on-ground events and experiences, involves a combination of cash and a share swap from Comic Con India's founders, Jatin Varma and Karan Kalra. Furthermore, the managerial team at Comic Con India will transition into becoming stakeholders by exchanging 27.5 crores of their company shares for Nodwin shares.

Digital Plus Physical Offer For Nodwin

Highlighting the kinship between Nazara’s digital focus and Comic Con's on-ground presence, industry experts see this deal as a fusion of physical and digital realms, creating a ‘phygital’ combination. 

“Nazara has been expanding its platforms to include gaming and more. Comic Con seems to be a natural fit,” states Sanjoy Roy, Managing Director, Teamwork Arts. 

Brand Guru & Founder of Harish Bijoor Consults Inc., Harish Bijoor, too applauds the move. He comments,  “Comic Con is an iconic event to own. This is a big and quirky one for Nazara! Well done folks!”

Elucidating on the surge of experiential, Bijoor adds, “The event and experiential industry is slated to boom in general. Comic Con is that relief in a rather tiring and tiresome industry!”

A Larger Impact

The deal will also impact the industry. “I have always said it - vertical growth is the way, and this acquisition is strategic and capital value intense, which will grow the market,” states Shailendra Singh, Founder, Percept.

Where Nazara benefits from a large-scale physical property, Comic Con India can benefit from the digital expertise that Nazara and Nodwin bring to the table. As is known, Comic Con India is a series of annual comic-based conventions held in India. The first edition was held in New Delhi in 2011 and over the years, this has expanded to other major cities such as Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Hyderabad and Ahmadabad.  

Additionally, Comic Con's unique offerings, such as high-end gaming figures and figurines, complement Nazara and Nodwin Gaming's focus on the gaming industry.

The Culture Connect

Pop culture has always been an impactful way of connecting with audiences and this acquisition reiterates this. 

Nodwin Gaming's emphasis on creating immersive experiences aligns with Comic Con's established brand resonance, providing Nazara with the opportunity to craft engaging experiences for a like-minded target audience. Both Comic Con and gaming cater to a younger enthusiast demographic, offering potential synergies.

Lumikai’s Founder, Salone Sehgal, adds, “Nodwin's acquisition is a great way to capture a current sub-culture and make it mainstream. Comic Con, alongside its existing event IPs such as NH7 Weekender, Dreamhack combined with the strength in esports events mixes the best of Gen-Z entertainment and gaming - all part of capturing a contemporary zeitgeist targeting India's aspirational young, digitally native demographic.”

In essence, this strategic collaboration goes beyond physical presence and digital strategies. It underscores the joint effort to create compelling experiences, capitalise on each other's strengths, and diversify into the broader media and entertainment landscape.