“How can physical sports compete with gaming for kids or help adults keep up with sports with their busy schedules?” asked Markos Aristides Kern, founder and CEO of FUN WITH BALLS. He answers his own question: “By combining technology and gaming with real sports to create a new dimension of active fun.”
The Munich-based startup FUN WITH BALLS merges sports with gaming, and has recently gained momentum in the international sports scene after winning multiple awards and competitions. After having launched its first product in Squash, interactiveSQUASH, its latest product multiBALL focuses on a much larger market from schools to gyms and sports academies. Founded in 2016, the startup has just raised its first institutional round led by HYPE Capital.
interactiveSQUASH has taken the sport by storm by offering a new business model and new revenue streams to club managers, and engaging players like never before, with more than 25,000 hours played on its interactive courts so far. The startup’s second product, multiBALL, transforms any wall into a fun, interactive sports experience that combines fitness, entertainment and education, and can be easily installed in any space to promote a healthy and active lifestyle.
After ramping up momentum and sales in multiple markets, the team now consists of 19 employees from 15 countries.
“We decided from a very early point that we would focus on international markets,” said Kern. “A diverse team with diverse experiences is a key element to this. With this recent investment, we plan to grow it for more traction and a clear focus on the US and Middle Eastern markets.”
“HYPE is always looking towards the next generation of sports startups and disruptive technologies,” Amir Raveh, general partner at HYPE Capital Fund. “We have witnessed the concept of FUN WITH BALLS become more mature and see huge potential in gamification of real sports. Having seen the great work and momentum this team has built first hand, we believe that it has the potential to be of the next unicorns of sports innovation.”