James July-August 2022 web - Flipbook - Page 31
Interviewed by Baker Owens
antasy sports used to be fairly complicated.
It was mostly focused on baseball, and there
were drafts, trading rules and a tedium of
day-to-day following, with a possible “payoff” of some
sort months away. Someone had to be a “commissioner” to run the league and keep track of everything. Now
things have changed. One of the most popular of the new
wave of online fantasy sports is PrizePicks, the brainchild
of its CEO and Atlanta native Adam Wexler.
PrizePicks not only looked at fantasy in a new way, it
is incredibly simple. Gone are the hours-long live drafts
and difficulty of following the league. Users of PrizePicks
can choose which sport they want to play.
Different players or teams pop up for selection, the
user can also decide which statistic to play, and then the
user decides the Over/Under of that statistic. They then
choose the amount they want to enter and can win some
multiple of that amount.
For instance, a user of PrizePicks can choose basketball player Steph Curry, and whether or not he will get
more or less than 28.5 points. If you choose correctly, you
win (the .5 is to ensure there is never a tie). Users have to
choose between two or five players but if the user enters
$20 on a game like this, they can win $60.
THE PRIZEPICKS BUSINESS BREAKTHROUGH
JULY/ AU GU ST 2022
This type of game can be done nearly every day,
on every sport. The acronym often associated with it is
DFS, or Daily Fantasy Sports. That was the PrizePicks
breakthrough. And that was Wexler’s niche when he
launched the new games under the PrizePicks
umbrella in 2018.
Since that time, the company has
seen incredible growth. It was named
the Fantasy Sports Business of the
Year by the Fantasy Sports and Gaming Association (FSGA) in 2021.
PrizePicks also won an award from
FSGA for Best Product Experience
from an Operator. It was shortlisted
as a “Rising Star of the Year” by
gaming and betting giant SBC.
PrizePicks also seems to take care
of its people, being named one of
the top places to work in metro
Atlanta in 2022. Wexler himself
was named to the Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “40 Under 40”
list last year.
The PrizePicks platform is very visual. Unlike Las Vegas where the NFL is king, the NBA is PrizePicks’ most
popular sport for users. They know what the players look
like, something that matters in the headshots that are
featured on PrizePicks. And perhaps mostly importantly,
there are 82 games per team, more than five times that
of an NFL schedule. For all the teams put together, there
are 1,230 games. Compared to the NFL season where
there are only 256 games, and very few of the players are
recognizable because they all wear helmets. The NBA
also offers something to play basically at all times. Every
moment of the game includes a rebound or points scored
or an assist or a steal. Baseball and football do not have
that kind of action.
ATLANTA BORN AND BRED
Wexler went to Riverwood High School and then
received a BBA degree in real estate from the University of Georgia. His father was a pioneer in real estate
data collection and it was expected Wexler would follow
into the family business after graduation. But he got bit
by the entrepreneurial bug while at UGA and, by his
mid-20s, was out of real estate and starting and selling tech businesses. He started a couple of businesses
that ultimately failed but then hit upon a success with
InsightPool, a social media marketing software company. That company was ultimately acquired by Trendkite,
which would be followed by another sale to Cision. He
had started out in Athens but moved to Atlanta when
it quickly became apparent that the capital city offered
enormous access to corporate clients.
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