What feels like a long time ago I met a fantastic team who had recently finished at Edinburgh University computing science department. They had yet to completely find a plan or product, but I just knew that these guys would do something great! It’s not often that you meet a team that you think that, but along with a few angels I know we invested a small amount of seed money, supported them by offering advice (that they mainly ignored!) and introduced them to a few VC’s.
They were focused on the US market and launched at Demo 2008, a product called Hubdub, a prediction news market. Nigel, the founder had spent quite a long time in markets, and saw the power of these at Betfair and Flutter, where he was a product manager.
The technical team was agile, fast and focused on detail (led by Tom and Chris) and by Rob, who is a great designer. All supported by the lovely Lesley who managed marketing.
How could we fail – well unfortunately although the product was popular with users, it didn’t have the level of traction to show any likelihood of being a home run. They pivoted, which I was sceptical about – but guess what I was wrong (not the first time)
They have now been running Fanduel.com for a few years and it is most definitely the leading daily fantasy game in the US. They recently launched on TV and their new ad is below.
I think there are a few things they could do to clean up the response devices on their website – but I have to say, they ROCK!