Fantasy sports is among the notable exceptions to real money online gambling legislation. And as the market expands into new verticals and concepts, venture capital investors are betting on a number of startups hoping to capture a share of the fantasy sports space.
In 2013, fantasy sports companies raised $70M across 17 deals. Of note, financing activity in 2013 represented huge growth on a year-over-year basis with deal activity nearly tripling and total funding growing from just over $6M invested in 2012. Boosting funding dollars to the fantasy sports market were a handful of notable deals including to Comcast Ventures-backed Hubdub, Cantor Ventures-backed TopLine Game Labs and DraftKings, which raised a $24M Series B round led by Redpoint Ventures in December. Interestingly, the Series B round was DraftKing’s second financing in just six months – coming after a $7.2M Series A round in May led by Atlas Venture.
Overall, venture investment into the fantasy sports space are still very much in their nascency as evidenced by where the deals in the space are happening. Seed and Series A rounds make up over 70% of fantasy sports deals over the past two years, with mid-stage deals seeing just over 1/4 of deals since 2012. So far, there is an absence of later-stage deals as none of the companies in the space have reached the scale to bring in unicorn type of money.
All of the underlying financing data on the fantasy sports market is on the CB Insights Venture Capital Database. All the above visualizations come right from Industry Analytics. Forget pivot tables. Sign up for free below.