Fanchest has closed on $4 million ($5.4 million total) in seed funding; capital the company will use to expand (25 more teams) its team themed gift box business and to increase customer repurchase rates. Each mystery chest (starting at $59) contains officially-licensed team apparel and other fan collectibles (valued at $80), plus a “golden ticket” giving the recipient a chance to win valuable prizes (like signed memorabilia or game tickets). Youth and baby versions are available, in addition to a premium offering that guarantees a player autograph. Drew Brees, Von Miller and DRL CEO Nick Horbaczewski participated in the investment round.
Howie Long-Short: In addition to the individual investors named, GoAhead Ventures (and Connected VC) participated in the seed round. GoAhead Ventures’ investment is noteworthy, as 2 recent Stanford graduates (both on Forbes’ 2017 30 under 30 list) are managing the $55 million venture capital fund and receiving all of the attention. While those 2 make headlines, it’s their partner TK Mori that brings the experience (and credibility) to this group; he’s 53 years old, has 3 IPOs and 5 M&A exits (from previous investments) under his belt.
Fan Marino: Speaking of autographs, Lou Holtz won 100 games and the ’88 National Title as the Notre Dame HC; but it was the 3 Championships he didn’t win (’89, ’90, ’93) that still stick in his craw. Holtz remains so upset that to this day, he signed an autograph for Steiner Sports with the note “1988 National Champs, Screwed in 89,90+93” inscribed under his name. RESPECT Magazine columnist (and friend of JWS) “Scoop B” Robinson talked to Coach Holtz, and had a chance to ask him about the custom inscription. For those wondering, Steiner Sports no longer offers the Lou Holtz “Screwed” helmet, but you can buy one with the words “Save Jimmy Johnson’s Ass for Me” for $599.99.
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