Eneba, a marketplace for gamers that sells games and other products, has raised an $8 million round of funding from Practica Capital and InReach Ventures. The funding is described as a “combination” of a seed and Series A round. Also participating in the funding for the Lithuanian startup was FJ Labs and a group of angel investors, including Mantas Mikuckas, COO of Vinted. The investment highlights once again the strength of the Baltics region as a tech ecosystem, after Lithuania produced its first Unicorn in the shape of Vinted, and Estonia added Pipedrive to its unicorns list.
With the increased shift to digital entertainment during the pandemic, the startup has managed to garner much more U.S. traffic. Launched in 2018 by two Lithuanian school friends, Vytis Uogintas and Žygimantas Mikšta, Eneba says it has attracted 26 million unique users because of its security features, “one-click to buy” gamer experience and fingerprinting technology. The site also optimizes its localized gaming experiences to show locally trending gaming products. Eneba’s platform is designed to reduce risky transactions, simplify the refunding process and deal with fraud threats.
Co-founder and CMO Žygimantas Mikšta said: “We had a lot of new users coming to Eneba during these uncertain times. While it was extremely satisfying to see our numbers increasing tenfold, there was a challenge to meet the demand. To better reflect our user numbers, we had to quickly expand our team to 130.”
Security has risen up the agenda in online gaming as virtual goods and services connected to games can be highly susceptible to fraud or theft. Although it competes with outlets like Amazon, eBay and retailers like GameStop and Game.co.uk, Eneba thinks it has found a better, tailored online pre/post-buying experience for gamers, while addressing the risk problems for sellers and buyers in the gaming world.
Donatas Keras, partner at Practica Capital said: “We are thrilled to be backing Vytis and Žygimantas. We’ve been impressed by their ability to execute at such speed as their company quickly scales, and to drive an incredible product with a unique value proposition for gamers.”
Co-founder of InReach Ventures, Roberto Bonanzinga, said: “In Europe we have a tradition of building successful companies in the gaming space. We are very excited to have discovered Eneba thanks to our AI platform when the company was unknown and under the radar. We have been extremely impressed by what the founders have been able to build in such a short amount of time.”