Fanbase launches its website with $5 Million

Fanbase launches its website with $5 Million

By SiliconIndia   |    22 Comments
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Bangalore: With an aim of covering information about pro and college athletes, Fanbase has launched its website with $5 million from the Benchmark Capital. Fanbase wants to be the world's largest web directory for sports information, the perfect place to go searching for any kind of sports trivia.

As reported by the New York Times, "Our long-term goal is to be the definitive source of information on all athletes," said Nirav Tolia, Chief Executive of Fanbase and a veteran Silicon Valley entrepreneur. Fanbase, which is located in San Francisco, said it currently includes dedicated pages for more than 1.7 million athletes and 20,723 teams across 23 diverse sports, including all major professional leagues and NCAA Division I, II, and III collegiate athletics. The website takes pride in the fact that, from its beta launch and till its official launch, users have already made 60,000 contributions.

Designed to be a wiki page, following the example set by Wikipedia with its user-generated content, and by IMDB, an online directory/database where users can find specific information on a certain domain, Fanbase has been online for a couple of months now, but in an unfinished beta development version. The most famous athletes' pages feature YouTube videos, with all the articles are authored by fans. Considerably less prominent athletes, like the members of the 1991 University of Pennsylvania women's lacrosse team, also have pages. In contrast, they are almost devoid of information except for the team rosters and game scores, which Fanbase found by digitizing thousands of team media guides over the last year. Fanbase holds information from other web resources and almanacs, but relies heavily on user-generated content. Data can be found on any particular sport, professional, college or even amateur. Pages can be created for every person that was part of a sports team, no matter how long or on what level. Users also have the option to log in by using Facebook authentication credentials, upload videos, photos or articles. The start-up company hopes that current and former athletes and fans will visit the site and give their personal touch to it.

Fanbase plans to make money by attracting a large audience and then selling advertising, and by letting users create and sell merchandise like customized team T-shirts. It also plans to expand over the next few months to include individual sports like golf, skiing and tennis.

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