The Samwer brothers are at it again. Shortly after cashing in on Citydeal, Germany’s most prolific startup investors have put millions into Panfu. Their incubator Rocket Internet joined by Holtzbrinck Ventures has invested a seven digit Euro sum in the multi-language online gaming world for kids.
It’s their third joint investment in Panfu, former rounds were done together alongside other investors including Lukasz Gadowski of Team Europe Ventures and Oliver Jung from shopping club Brands4Friends.
Since its launch in December 2007, Panfu has become Europe’s leading website for kids between 6 and 14 years with 15 million registered users and is profitable since early 2009. The company claims a turnover growth of 25 per cent every month during the last half-year. Its neat multi-player online games in eleven different languages are educational and deal with the adventures of cuddly panda bears, bunnies and hippos.
Germany’s dreaded testing organization TÜV has officially approved the Flash website to be childproof and safe from violence and advertising. Every dirty word is filtered when kids are chatting with their avatars. This year the company plans to roll out in nine more languages.
Panfu and its new spin off Oloko, started in April 2010, follow a freemium model. Every child can join and play for free but the real deal is the Gold Package, which allows special access to additional games and functions not available to non-paying members like learning games at the Panfu school or dressing up your avatar, adopting a pet, decorating your tree house and lots more. Sounds like Second Life for kids to me, only that each and every character is a panda bear.