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Benchmark Invests $8 Million In Power Challenge Sports MMO

Representatives from VC firm Benchmark Capital have announced that the company has invested $8 million in Swedish-headquartered online browser-based sports game developer, Power Challenge, with that company's CEO suggesting that "...web-based gaming is th
Representatives from VC firm Benchmark Capital have announced that the company has invested $8 million in Swedish-headquartered online sports game developer, Power Challenge. Power Challenge is a provider of internet-based multiplayer sports games such as Power Football, which run in Web browsers using Java technology. All games are free to play, with premium add-on services available for more dedicated players. According to a statement announcing the investment, the company's two primary offerings, the soccer-based Power Challenge and soccer and hockey-based ManagerZone are rapidly expanding, with the sites currently adding more than 4,000 new players each day. It's expected, though not confirmed that this new investment will mean further expansion into new sports. Benchmark, which recently signed Electronic Arts' online and mobile executive Mitch Lasky as a general partner, has been responsible for early funding for mobile gaming and interactive entertainment start-ups such as Jamdat, Red 5, Habbo Hotel, Second Life, Gaia, Bebo and Zlango. Power Challenge was founded in 2004 by Johan Christenson, an Internet entrepreneur. The company, which is headquartered in Karlskrona, Sweden, merged with ManagerZone in 2007 in order to strengthen its position in the rapidly growing online gaming market. "By taking full advantage of the action and management aspects of sports, our games have become the ultimate destination for sports and game fans alike. Web-based gaming is the future of the industry as it takes interaction between users to a new level," said Johan Christenson, chief executive officer of Power Challenge. "With Benchmark on board, we gain both the network and resources we need to be a leading player in the Web-based sports world. We can now increase the pace of releasing new games, and enhance the experience for both new and existing users."

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