This week we got the chance to chat with Greg Kajewski and James Seils, co-founders of BettorEdge, a sports betting community app that launched in January of 2021.
Powered by Sportradar, BettorEdge is an online marketplace that is all about creating a fairer betting experience with no-vig sports betting. The team behind the app has a clear mission, “to give the edge back to the bettor by democratizing sports betting”, and they do so by allowing bettors in over 40 states – even where betting is yet not legal – to trade bets amongst each other, all in the app, with no hidden commissions or fees.
Here is a short video that explains how the app works:
Greg and James took the time out of their busy schedule to chat with us about BettorEdge and their plans for the future.
If you were to describe BettorEdge in one minute, what would you say?
Kajewski & Seils. We democratized sports betting by building a social media-driven marketplace for bettors. Think of us as the Venmo of sports betting. We are not an operator, we just allow people to trade bets, modeled after the stock market. We also brought the social aspect back into betting. We give bettors in most states the opportunity to trade bets, even where traditional sportsbooks are not legal — because we’re a social marketplace, not an operator.
Why did you create BettorEdge? What is your backstory/business model?
Kajewski & Seils. We know that odds are stacked against bettors. They have to win 52.4% of the time to actually win money. The experience is muddled with tons of fees, and the bettor doesn’t have a lot of control. We wanted to change that.
We met at our first job out of college as accountants. We’re both huge sports fans and connected around our shared love of sports and being driven towards entrepreneurism. Once we had the idea for BettorEdge we began developing the platform. We quickly entered into Sportradar’s Innovation Challenge with the idea of a social platform with a no commission sports betting exchange at the center of the experience and won the competition. We launched in January of this year.
What makes you different from others in the industry? Others have tried creating a betting exchange in the past. What makes BettorEdge’s experience different from those that haven’t succeeded?
Kajewski & Seils. First and foremost, we don’t have a vig, commission or take any fees that dip into your winnings. BettorEdge ensures that it’s all in your hands — select an event, and place a buy or sell order for a price that you chose. We match you with other players’ orders.
Most bettors don’t know about the hidden fees that get subtracted when they win. We also know that betting is a social medium at its core, and the industry has moved away from that core purpose. According to a recent HPL Digital Sport report, the capability bettors are most excited about in the future is social betting (31%). We know this is a high priority for bettors, so we built in a social media app within BettorEdge that allows users to follow friends’ activity, share information, and like, comment or compete directly against their activity.
Where do you see this type of marketplace going in the future?
Kajewski & Seils. After we launched, BettorEdge really took off and we realized there is a huge desire for this type of experience in sports betting. We’re about to hit $3 million in total orders since our launch.
Our sole purpose is to continue to innovate for the benefit of the sports bettor
Bettors are setting their own lines, so they get immediate feedback on what is working and how they can shift in the future. Sports betting education is a big piece for us. The more educated sports bettors are, the better the entire experience works for everyone.
Besides allowing the market to set the prices, what other benefits or intangibles are a by-product of the BettorEdge platform?
Kajewski & Seils. We’re finding that our marketplace is not only providing bettors with an opportunity to set the market, but our bettors, through interacting with the platform and other users, are becoming more educated on sports betting. In a sportsbook environment, you can blindly place a bet on an event without knowing much about what you’re doing. Because our users create orders, they see in real-time if their bet will bring action or interest, which in turn helps create a healthier and more sustainable exchange.
Another major impact our product has on the market surrounds in-play betting. In-play betting is the future of sports betting in America, however one major hurdle for it involves pricing engines to supply lines for the sportsbook for every single live play.
One of the most unique intangibles of BettorEdge is the fact that our market sets the pricing. Due to the fact that BettorEdge is an exchange and not a sportsbook, we don’t have the burden of needing a pricing engine to support in-play betting. In fact, our users are already utilizing the exchange to place in-play bets. Our users set the price and the bet can be executed if there is someone on the other end willing to accept it. We just had our busiest weekend of in-play betting during the US Open at Torrey Pines.
What’s next for BettorEdge? Do you have any unique partnerships in the sports industry?
Kajewski & Seils. Giving back to the community has always been important to us. We allow our users to donate their saved vig or commission to any of our several charitable partners, including our featured charity — Chad Greenway’s Lead the Way Foundation. About 25% of our users have taken advantage of this option. This gives users a direct way to give back to causes they care about. We intend to continue growing that list.
Overall, our sole purpose is to continue to innovate for the benefit of the sports bettor. Instead of the books dictating everything, we see the bettors taking a more active role in the future of sports betting using technology and social media. We’re changing the mindset of what betting could be.