Fanspole Raises Funds from Better Capital

Fanspole Raises Funds from Better Capital

Mumbai based Fanspole Online Solutions Pvt Ltd, which had launched its fantasy gaming platform, Fanspole founded in 2015. It has raised an undisclosed amount as part of their pre-seed funding round from Better Capital, an early-stage venture capital firm.

The founders Aniket Shinde and Hardik Gondaliya are both from DJ Sanghvi College of Engineering pass outs and to date have managed to garner 1 million users on their platform with zero marketing spends.

The funding will be used for marketing and product development. The app currently supports all major sports in India including Cricket and Football and battle royale games like Call of Duty and Free Fire.

Fantasy Sports in India is a fast-growing category with many legal hurdles common for such a new platform now, out of the way. Dream11 currently dominates with over 90% market share in Fantasy Sports but has also cleared the way for other, smaller, and bootstrapped startups to take a shot at the market.

Where there used to be a handful of Fantasy Sports games in 2015 now has hundreds of small and large players with enough space for all. The gross revenue from Fantasy Sports Apps in 2018-19 of $130.55 million has more than tripled to $350.40 million in 2019-20. The pandemic definitely removed live sports tournaments and thus reducing games on offer for users but it also became a catalyst for user interest.

Users who have never gambled but are fans of certain sports have found a new engaging way to test their knowledge and understanding of the game. From passive viewers, users have become extremely engaged and financially invested in the final outcome.

For a long time, dropping engagement with the biggest sporting events in the country has been a concern. IPL saw its peak in the early season with ratings dropping every subsequent season. A survey by the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS) and Kantar says 60% of Fantasy Sports players watch more sports than they used to while there is a significant increase in sports apart from cricket.

This brings us to another major aspect of fantasy sports. Dual screen engagement has been a challenge for game developers for a while now. Unlike television programming, sports have been a low hanging fruit but the problem remained. How to further engage the user who is sitting at home and idling away on their phones or tablets. Better Capital’s Vaibhav Domkundwar has a similar vision.

“Engagement around sports, as well as e-sports, happens when users go beyond “watching,” and the Fanspole fantasy contests platform is exactly what was missing. The instant adoption Fanspole has seen purely based on word of mouth is a great indication of the gap in fantasy sports in India. The “play together” with friends and people you know is very powerful, and I am excited to be partnering with the Fanspole team.”

A much bigger change is in motion now. A major reason why this challenge is important because second screen engagement brings targeting options for advertisers. And better targeting improves revenue which in turn makes developing markets with a high number of users but low ARPU (Average Revenue per User)

Fantasy Sports is a stepping stone in a direction with the potential for a complete overhaul in user engagement and stickiness. Real Money Games such as Fantasy Sports is an early stage in a much larger situation which can possibly change how we engage not just with sports but any content in general. Solving the problem of dual screen engagement also gives Fantasy Sports a potential value much larger than the remainder of the Real Money Games market combined but it’s not limited to just that. Fantasy Sports is an obvious spoke for e-commerce and sporting events being the largest marketing spending events in every market across the globe, Fantasy Sports once plugged into the likes of Amazon, Flipkart, Taobao could completely change how billions of sports fans experience sports.

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