Israeli Sports Tech Firm Gets $23M in Funding, Eyes US Sports Betting Market for New Ventures
Posted on: August 18, 2019, 08:19h.
Last updated on: August 18, 2019, 10:02h.
WSC Sports, an Israeli tech company that recently announced $23 million in investment funding, has its eye on the American sports betting market, according to Forbes.
The company uses artificial intelligence to create personalized videos in a real-time format. Last year, the company said it reviewed more than 17,000 sporting events and developed more than 850,000 short-form videos for its customers, who then deployed them across various social media channels.
In an interview with David Bloom of Forbes, WSC Sports co-founder and CEO Daniel Shichman said the company is looking at packaging highlights for bettors who make in-game wagers.
While in-game betting is more popular in Europe, it is gaining traction in an ever-growing US market, especially since mobile sports betting, which lends itself quite well to the rapid pace of in-game betting, has been established in New Jersey and is growing in Pennsylvania.
It can be used to attract users,” Shichman said. “There might be a soccer game where the underdog scores first. A push notification can be sent, and the odds are changing dramatically. Fans are getting real-time video. We’re basically super powering those rights holders.”
Professional sports leagues, such as the NBA, Major League Soccer, and Germany’s Bundesliga, have signed deals with WSC, as have media outlets like Bleacher Report.
Investors Offer Sports, Gaming Ties
With the current round of investment, the company has raised $39 million total. In addition to amassing capital, WSC is also forming strategic relationships with key stakeholders in sports. Two months ago, the company announced former NBA Commissioner David Stern and former ESPN digital executive John Kosner have signed on to serve as advisors.
“WSC is revolutionizing the production, curation, personalization, and distribution of sports video highlights worldwide. And they are doing it in real-time, transforming the fan experience and creating extraordinary new business opportunities,” Stern said.
Those who have invested in WSC Sports include Detroit Venture Partners, the investment firm owned by JACK Entertainment Founder and Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, and Elysian Park Ventures, the investment firm founded by the Los Angeles Dodgers owners that has also funded DraftKings.
WSC is a six-year-old company that has grown substantially in recent years. In addition to the NBA, MLS, and Bundesliga, it also works with the PGA Tour, US Open Tennis, and FIBA, basketball’s international governing body.
Over the past three years, the company, which is headquartered near Tel Aviv, has more than doubled its clientele and revenues each year. WSC, which also has offices in New York and Sydney, now employs more than 100 people.
WSC won honors for Best Use of AI at the Digiday Awards and for Outstanding Sports Technology at the 2018 SportTechie Awards.
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