SportsHero (SportsHero.mobi), the world’s first social network dedicated to sports prediction, is heading for a listing on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) through a reverse takeover (RTO) of Nevada Iron Ltd (ASX: NVI). As part of the transaction, a placement of 60 million shares of common stock at AU$0.05 per share are being issued, raising A$3 million ($2.24 million).
SportsHero’s ASX listing comes at a time when mobile penetration in the Indo-Asia Pacific is booming, with two billion smartphones in 2016, according to research firm Statista. This is combined with a stronger sporting culture, from football to basketball, baseball to tennis.
Sports are also making an impact on national economies: the Chinese government plans to promote the development of China’s sports industry and consumption, with a target to have their domestic sports industry exceed US$727 billion (5 trillion yuan) in value by 2025.
NVI has issued a prospectus and the initial roadshows to brokers and sophisticated investors in Singapore and Australia have enjoyed strong interest; SportsHero expects to close the issue early. The RTO has been approved by NVI shareholders and SportsHero anticipates beginning trading on the ASX in December 2016.
Speaking on the development, Dinesh Bhatia, co-founder and CEO of SportsHero, said, “SportsHero has been built by sports fans for the sports fan. We’re looking to extend the sporting experience through daily, weekly and monthly contests with prize giveaways of sports memorabilia.”
“We’re also connecting sports fans to brands and sponsors globally, and in the process, building the world’s largest sport fan and sponsorship ecosystem. We’re also enabling sports fans to monetize their prediction skills in a fun and competitive manner,” he adds.
Through SportsHero, sports fans can engage, compete and interact with each other through daily, weekly and monthly competitions and win daily prizes. The SportsHero app supports football (soccer), the largest global sport, and is planning to roll out cricket, basketball and baseball in 2017.
The company claims high levels of engagement among its users and the prospectus reports 80,000 users have already registered with the site. The SportsHero app enables users to monetise their sports prediction skills and become “Sports Heroes”.
For a followers fee, SportsHero gives users access to validated prediction tips and revenue share with these top sports heroes. Since launching in April 2016, SportsHero has been building an ecosystem connecting brands and sponsors to sports fans with itself as the prime node in the ecosystem, working with various global brands to drive peer-to-peer (P2P) commerce and user engagement.
The listing comes at a time when changes in the experience are convergent with changes in the entertainment industry; an AT Kearney report from 2011 noted that the global sports industry had a capitalisation of between $480 billion to $620 billion, including infrastructure construction, sporting goods, licensed products and live sports events.
The global sports events market – covering all ticketing, media and marketing revenues for major sports – was estimated to be worth $64 billion in 2009.
Given the size of this market, SportsHero has found a niche in terms of the traction it has built. This shows the power of leveraging on the community aspect of sports to connect sponsors to fans and permitting fans to monetise their passion for sports, capitalised on opportunities around sports prediction and alternate sports revenues.
Bhatia explains: “At the heart of this is consumer demand – and by offering a mobile app which engages users, meets the objectives of brands and satisfies regulators, we are confident of creating a legacy as the world’s number one social medium dedicated to sports prediction.”