NBA Selects Dallas’ nVenue for Fan-Tech Boosting NBA Launchpad Initiative

nVenue's “micro-betting” next-play predictions have aired on NBC Sports as well as Apple TV+ MLB broadcasts, and it kicked off its NFL betting product in October. Now the startup is taking the court with the NBA to develop a micro-betting curation engine that leverages NBA assets.

Dallas-based nVenue—whose sports betting platform uses machine learning and AI to create “next play” probabilities and micro-bets for fans watching live—has grabbed the attention of the NBA. 

The league has selected nVenue as one of seven companies for the second installment of NBA Launchpad, an initiative to source, evaluate, and pilot emerging technologies that advance the NBA’s top priorities on and off the court.

For 2023, the NBA aims to identify “emerging fan experiences,” both at home and in NBA arenas.

That’s right up nVenue’s alley—or court, or field, depending on the sport.

Already playing ball with the MLB and NFL

nVenue’s “micro-betting” next-play predictions have aired on NBC Sports as well as Apple TV+ MLB broadcasts. In October, the startup kicked off its NFL predictive betting product, with a goal of getting it into NFL game broadcasts on NBC Sports. 

SportsPro Daily put nVenue on its 2023 list of of 20 Sports Tech Ideas to Invest in Now. And last September, nVenue raised $1 million from EBCI Holdings, adding to a seed round it raised earlier in 2022. The startup has offices in Dallas and Houston and is a portfolio company of the Comcast NBCUniversal Sports Tech Accelerator

nVenue will build a ‘basketball-specific micro-betting curation engine’

Of the seven companies selected for the 2023 NBA Launchpad, nVenue is the only one in the sports betting landscape.  As part of the partnership, nVenue says it “will build a basketball-specific micro-betting curation engine that leverages NBA assets to create unique, contextual in-game micro-betting markets, props, and parlays.”

The collaborative product will be presented by nVenue to NBA executives, strategic partners, and investors on NBA Launchpad Demo Day during the NBA’s Summer League in Las Vegas.

Driving innovation in basketball

“NBA Launchpad is proud to support startups that are leveraging AI and machine learning to drive innovation in the sport of basketball,” Tom Ryan, VP of Basketball Strategy, NBA, said in a statement. “By partnering with these cutting-edge companies, we’re pushing the boundaries of what’s possible on the court and unlocking new insights that have the potential to transform the game.”

“The expansion of NBA Launchpad has opened the door to create and enhance ways for fans to experience our game,” added Jason Bieber, VP of global strategy & innovation at the NBA. “By partnering with these innovative companies, we hope to bring fans closer to the action and uncover insights about the future of fan engagement.”

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