Unable to bet legally, tens of millions of Indian cricket fans have turned to fantasy games based on the Indian Premier League, which have exploited a loophole to create a billion-dollar industry.
Bolstered by foreign investment, Indian firms have invested heavily in the cash-for-points online games, despite fears that government regulation could put the new industry at risk.
Dream11 — now the main sponsor for the IPL, which has its final on Tuesday in Dubai — says it has more than 100 million users for its cricket, football and NBA platforms.
Users pay a fee, often less than 50 US cents, to join a contest that escapes India’s ban on gambling because it’s considered a game of “skill”.
They register a team of favourite players and win points for their performances in IPL games, which can be turned into cash.
The number of fantasy games has mushroomed for this year’s IPL, which is being…