This is one in a series of stories that highlights each company in the 2019 class of the Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs Accelerator, powered by Techstars. Visit LIFT Labs to learn more about this world-class program for connectivity, media and entertainment startups, and get information on applications for the next class.
Matt Bailey has always been a big sports fan. In his home country of Australia, that means rooting for cricket and rugby teams. When he arrived in Brooklyn, it meant learning the intricacies of American football, baseball and hockey.
But Bailey didn't just want to watch — he wanted to participate. He played fantasy football but found it too time-consuming. He thought about newly legal wagering, but didn't have enough knowledge to bet real money on games. Why couldn't he make some simple predictions about sporting events — like which team will win, who'll gain the most yards and who'll score the first touchdown?
It led him to build GameOn, which offers simple prediction contests for everyday fans. A typical GameOn game features about eight questions and players accumulate points with each correct answer. It's free to play, brand supported and winners earn cash prizes.
"We're breaking down engagement barriers for people who don't necessarily know a lot about sports," Bailey said. "We're turning standard moments — like a touchdown or a player gaining a certain number of yards — into what feels like match-winning moments for the fan as they're getting right answers."
The gameplay is super simple. There's no player drafting, no hard-to-understand point system and no reliance on complicated analysis and knowledge before actually playing.
"Platforms built for fantasy leagues are made for hardcore fans, and there are serious engagement barriers for the everyday fan," Bailey said. "We feel that all fans — both experts and novices — will enjoy our platform because it is both challenging to win and accessible at the same time."