When betting on sports, no matter who you are, winning is always better than losing. But while there are some bettors who value monetary gain above all other considerations, there are others for whom a series of bets acts as a kind of social cartilage, a ritualistic way of staying in touch with distant acquaintances. .
Ted Mauze is one of them. After graduating from high school in California, he chose to go to Yale – as far as he could geographically from the comfort of home. But thanks to sports betting, he and his childhood friends kept in constant touch – and then thought about how they could do it in a more streamlined way, with all the switch between sports betting apps, text messages. , etc.
Mauze, now 26, had just graduated from college in 2019 and worked as an investment banker.
âMy plan was to follow the entire financial path like my parents,â he said. Sport grip.
But then he thought he might try to “build a product” that he and his friends “had been living for five years.” Chalkboard, the app he ended up developing, “is the story of best friends growing up in a betting group chat,” he said.
In a nutshell, Chalkboard allows all of a user’s betting related data – sports betting apps, scores, news – to come together in one place, with the added benefit of a group chat feature. If you’re familiar with Discord, Hootsuite, or the Sleeper fantasy sports app, then you’ll know where Chalkboard is going.
âWe are the first app to have book sync for FanDuel and DraftKings,â said Mauze, who is the CEO of Chalkboard. “But no one is focusing on group messaging.”
Or, as Mauze says in a soon to be released press release, âThe ‘placing’ of betting is not the exciting part of sports betting. Unforgettable moments happen once this bet goes live, your team has victory at their fingertips, and the group chat collectively collapses. These thrilling moments deserve a playful upgrade, and we designed Chalkboard to do just that.
“It’s Sleeper, but for sports betting”
Along with Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson, former NBA star Baron Davis was an early investor in Sleeper. When Mauze first introduced him to the concept of Chalkboard, Mauze said Davis told him, “It’s Sleeper, but for sports betting, and I have to go get Paul.”
âPaulâ is said to be Paul George of the Los Angeles Clippers, a team for which Davis once played. As an active athlete, George is prohibited from betting on professional basketball or giving advice on which of his rivals to support against the spread, but he is more than welcome to bet on, say, the NFL.
âPaul is giving us feedback on the user experience, with the ultimate goal of getting him involved in the next football season,â said Mauze. âCome football next season, we’re going to do a lot of things with Paul touting these spaces. That’s the behavior that’s happening behind the scenes anyway, so the leagues are getting a little less tight in terms of what can be. said and what is not.
So far, Chalkboard has chosen to partner with NBA-centric personalities, including the influencer Saniya – because, as Mauze said, “the NFL is a bit stricter on all of this.” That may be the case, but like their NBA counterparts, NFL players are allowed to bet on other sports – although, oddly enough, non-athletic employees in the latter league are not at all allowed to bet on sports.
Mauze said: “To be honest, we learn as we go.”
And he is not alone.