DFS Site PrizePicks Lands New Investments from Poker Realm, Retired NBA Player

Posted on: January 30, 2021, 11:30h. 

Last updated on: January 31, 2021, 12:49h.

Daily fantasy sports operator PrizePicks announced this week it has closed on a “strategic” round of equity funding. And once again, the Atlanta-based company is drawing interest from both the poker world and the locker room.

PrizePicks investment
Andrew Bogut (with ball), with the Golden State Warriors, is about to posterize Denver’s JaVale McGee during the 2013 NBA playoffs. This week, the now-retired basketball player became an investor in daily fantasy sports operator PrizePicks. (Image: Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)

The company did not disclose how much funding it secured. However, in a press release Thursday, it announced it received investments from several individuals and firms. That includes the founders of Poker Central and former NBA No. 1 draft pick Andrew Bogut.

CEO Adam Wexler said in a statement that the new investment gives PrizePicks “flexibility for the future,” in case it chooses to expand beyond daily fantasy like FanDuel and DraftKings.

The alignment with the poker industry and these stellar investors will benefit both sides in both the short term and the long term should we move into areas such as sports betting and iCasino,” Wexler said.

PrizePicks touts itself as the simplest format within the DFS realm and the “closest thing to sports betting” in such states as California, Florida, Georgia, and Texas. The daily fantasy site is legal for real-money play in 27 states and the District of Columbia. Rather than trying to build a lineup, players pick between two and five athletes or eSports gamers. Players choose whether each of their selections will go over or under their projected fantasy point score.

Payouts depend on the format the player chooses. One allows the player to miss on some selections and still win. The other is similar to parlay betting, requiring a player to be correct on all selections to win money.

Earlier this month, PrizePicks unveiled single-statistic markets for various sports. That enables players to pick the over/under on such stats as a basketball player’s rebounds or a PGA golfer’s strokes in a round.

Investment to Fund New Jobs, Developments

The company said the new funds will allow it to add employees, including new executives.

In addition, the release mentioned the investment allows for new developments on the PrizePicks platform, including several patents.

As a privately owned company, PrizePicks does not have to report its financials. In its release, the company says it’s the third-largest daily fantasy provider in terms of monthly revenue. It also says its average revenue per customer is nearly $100.

PrizePicks says it ended the 2020 calendar year with five consecutive months increased of traffic and revenue.

PrizePicks Well-Positioned for “2021 and Beyond”

Poker Central is a media site devoted to the card game and its players. It streams live events worldwide on PokerGO, an over-the-top subscription service that also features archived events from Poker After Dark and the World Series of Poker.

Others from the poker world that have invested previously in PrizePicks include Hall of Fame pro Phil Hellmuth, Hall of Fame tournament director Jack McClelland, and pro player and streamer Jeff Gross.

Bogut is not the first former pro athlete to jump in on PrizePicks. Former Atlanta Braves slugger Andruw Jones has been a shareholder since 2019.

“While sports fans are overly focused on the public companies in this category, it’s the emerging organizations who are creatively innovating to best position themselves to win over time,” said Bogut, who announced his retirement prior to the start of the 2020-21 NBA season,

Other investors that are part of the new round include Parlay Capital Holdings and Phoenix Capital Ventures, a pair of previous investors. A newcomer is a venture firm tied to Magic City Casino in South Florida. Magic City is a PrizePicks partner whose jai alai matches are available for daily fantasy play.

“We’re positioned strategically for 2021 and beyond, and that’s in large part due to how we’ve chosen to align with a savvy and diverse set of equity investors rather than a strict venture financing path due to our sound, profitable business model,” Wexler said.