PickUp, a technology platform that helps media companies make sports content more interactive while bringing fans closer to the game, has raised initial funding in a seed round led by KB Partners, and will launch later this year.
PickUp enables publishers and content creators to make editorial content interactive through simple, contextual, and shareable questions. Pickup’s platform lets publishers tap into the pulse of fan conversations and embed relevant questions, designed to further quantify said pulse, into their content.
Fans can then share their answers within their communities and invite them to also answer the questions, creating a deeper level of engagement with the content they are already consuming and affording publishers incremental monetization opportunities in the process. Unlike other existing offerings, Pickup is unique in that it brings content into the real fan conversations via text, Slack, Whatsapp, and broader social channels.
“Even in this time of uncertainty, there is one thing that we’re sure of, sports fans still have opinions, and they want their opinion to be heard,” said Dan Healy, Co-Founder, CEO, PickUp. “Those opinions are only going to ramp up as our favorite players and teams get back on the field.”
After demonstrating success in a closed beta, PickUp recently raised initial funding in a seed round led by KB Partners, bolstered by an investment from DRIVE by DraftKings, and is currently exploring an additional round.
“Before we went wider with this technology, we wanted to be able to prove that fans want deeper engagement with the content they are reading,” said PickUp co-founder and head of product, Chris Meisner. “The results of the beta solidified our thesis, and we are excited to be tapping into an unmet need for passionate fans everywhere.”
Healy started PickUp after more than eight years with Prolific Interactive as Partner and COO. Prolific built apps for Lululemon, Soulcycle, TB12, AMEX and many others, and received an investment from Omnicom, before Healy and the leadership group sold the company to WeWork in 2019.
The PickUp advisory board includes: Jon Werther, Former President of Meredith, Noah Szubski, Former CEO, The Action Network and Di Wilkins, CEO Critical Mass.
“I have seen numerous platforms attempt to contextually engage sports fans during my 20-plus year career in media,” said Werther. “PickUp does it as well as anyone I’ve seen.”
Healy and his co-founder Meisner are huge sports fans who are veterans of the New York startup world, and bring a wealth of experience in media, technology, and product design to PickUp.