Category Archives: Sports

VICIS completes $28.5M Series B and launches its first youth helmet

VICIS has closed its Series B on $28.5 million, with participation from NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers via Rx3 Ventures. Rodgers joins a list of other pro footballers to back the helmet startup, including Roger Staubach, Jerry Rice, Russell Wilson and Doug Baldwin. VICIS is known for its $950 Zero1 football helmet designed for adult players. The company spent $20 million over the course of three years collaborating with athletes, engineers and neuroscientists to design and finetune the high-tech head shield, which protects against impact forces and mitigates the effects of collisions […]

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The tactics behind The Athletic’s breakout success in sports subscriptions

Local newspapers may be shuttering and people may be consuming most news on social media, but don’t tell Alex Mather that a subscription news publication can’t grow like a unicorn startup. His 2-year-old sports publisher The Athletic has gained over 100,000 paid subscribers (60 percent under age 34) and has a 90 percent retention rate. Having already raised $30 million in its short life, the company announced a new $40 million Series C yesterday, led by Founders Fund and Bedrock Capital. It reportedly values The Athletic around $200 […]

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NBA All-Star Michael Jordan leads a $26 million round for esports group aXiomatic

NBA legend Michael Jordan is playing the esports game now, leading a $26 million round of funding for the ownership group aXiomatic. For Jordan and new co-investor Declaration Capital — the family office investing the personal wealth of David Rubenstein, who co-founded and serves as co-executive chairman of the multi-billion-dollar private equity firm, The Carlyle Group — investing in esports looks like a slam dunk. The company announced the investment from Jordan, Declaration Capital and Curtis Polk, the managing partner and alternate governor of Hornets Sports & Entertainment, and manager of the […]

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SoftBank leads $35M investment in sports engagement startup Heed

Heed, a startup looking to create new ways for sports leagues and clubs to engage with fans, is announcing that it has raised $35 million led by SoftBank Group International. As laid out for me by CEO Danna Rabin, the company sits at the intersection of sports and IoT — which makes sense, since it was founded by Internet of Things company AGT International and talent agency Endeavor . “Our primary mission is to connect the young audience with sports leagues and clubs,” Rabin said. “[Those] audiences are […]

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DraftKings CEO Jason Robins is coming to Disrupt SF

In May, the Supreme Court struck down a federal law that had banned gambling on sporting events in most states. That ruling is set to unlock billions of dollars in new business opportunities for online fantasy sports sites like DraftKings. That’s why we’re absolutely thrilled to have DraftKings CEO Jason Robins join us on stage at Disrupt SF. DraftKings launched back in 2012 and quickly grew into a household name by offering daily and weekly fantasy sports contests across a number of sports. In fact, as of […]

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What should competitive Fortnite look like?

Last weekend, Epic Games put forth its first true effort at official competitive Fortnite Battle Royale. It was a disaster. The private hosts used for the tournament were about as laggy as could be, with pro players getting eliminated simply because they couldn’t move. This tournament was for a total prize of $250K. That’s big money, and big frustration for pro players who were essentially eliminated by the whims of the server gods. But on top of the lag, the whole thing was, well, boring. A cardinal […]

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PlayVS CEO Delane Parnell to talk high school eSports at Disrupt SF

The gaming world is evolving at a rapid clip. No longer is the idea of the lonely gamer a reality. Twitch and Discord have brought gamers together and given everyone the opportunity to see just how talented some of these young players are. Meanwhile, publishers and eSports organizations have built out an infrastructure. But there is plenty left to do, and PlayVS founder and CEO Delane Parnell is well aware of this. We’re amped to announce that Parnell is joining us at TC Disrupt SF in September […]

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The International Olympic Committee is curious about esports

If there’s still any doubt that esports is coming into the mainstream, just look to the world’s biggest sporting event: The Olympics. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) have announced they will host an esports forum, looking to gauge whether or not esports has a place in the Olympics. According to the release, the IOC and GAISF will host esports players, game publishers, teams, media, sponsors and event organizers, as well as National Olympic Committees, International Sports Federations, athletes and […]

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