Paddy Power, the son of the owner of the bookmaker-of-the-same-name David Power, has raised over €500,000 in crowdfunding for his American SportZ Exchange (ASX) sports trading platform.
The ASX project was founded in 2019 whilst a beta version was launched in 2020, and will function as a ‘stock market’ for sports, combining fantasy sports and financial markets, enabling fans to purchase ‘shares’ in players and teams.
When these players and teams perform well, the share price increases, resulting in higher returns for platform users, whilst AI will also be used in order to leverage live match data.
“We don’t actually need any further funds at this time but equally if we take in an extra €500,000 now it will get us to a larger Series A financing round, hopefully in about 12 months’ time,” Power said.
“We are engaged in numerous partnership discussions with major brands in the States and it makes sense to ensure we have sufficient funds to capitalise on these opportunities.”
This marks the second use of crowdfunding to secure financial backing for the development of ASX, following an initial funding round earlier this month, which also secured over 500,000 in investment.
Conducted using the Dublin-based Spark equity crowdfunding platform, the second round generated over €547,000 from 142 investors in 12 hours over the weekend.
When combined with the first funding round, the campaign has generated around 1.1 million to support the launch of ASX, which will be based in Ireland but will specifically target the US sports market.
The project has already secured multiple US partners, including sports organisations such as the Philadelphia Phillies and Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball (MLB) and the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Vegas Golden Knights.
Meanwhile, online sports streaming service DAZN and Sinclair Broadcast Group – an affiliate of major media outlets such as Fox and ABC – have also signed on as partners, whilst Canadian group Rogers Media is reportedly ‘in discussions’ with the startup.
Additionally, a successful recruitment campaign has seen Mike Griffin, Commercial Director at the Racing Post, join as CEO, whilst Conall Flood, former electronic exchange technology Head at Banco Santander, has also filled a vacancy. Other roles have been taken on by former executives and employees of Paddy Power and JP Morgan, among others.