A sports startup CEO explains how he’s cutting costs and retooling his business to avoid layoffs

This story is available exclusively on Business Insider Prime. Join BI Prime and start reading now. Yasin Abbak is the CEO of Fantasy Life, a sports startup cofounded by personality Matthew Berry that provides breaking-news alerts and sports information to gamblers and fantasy-sports players.The early-stage startup was in the middle of a series-A fundraising round…

A sports startup CEO explains how he’s cutting costs and retooling his business to avoid layoffs

This story is available exclusively on Business Insider Prime.
Join BI Prime and start reading now.

Yasin Abbak is the CEO of Fantasy Life, a sports startup cofounded by personality Matthew Berry that provides breaking-news alerts and sports information to gamblers and fantasy-sports players.The early-stage startup was in the middle of a series-A fundraising round and preparing for product launches tied to basketball and baseball when the coronavirus pandemic hit and suspended most live sports.Abbak, who landed his first finance job at JPMorgan Chase in 2009 as the US economy was in recovery, told Business Insider how operating as a frugal startup is helping keep his business afloat during the current crisis. The company was already lean, with no office space and seven employees, and is getting leaner by auditing its expenses.Abbak said Fantasy Life has enough capital to make it through the fall football season, and is strategizing about how to extend that runway. But Abbak also said he’s trying to avoid hasty decision-making that could undermine the company’s core business model and cost more money in the long run. Click here for more BI Prime stories.

Fantasy Life CEO Yasin Abbak graduated from college in 2009, shortly after the last global financial crisis. And he told Business Insider that building his career while the US economy was recovering helped prepare him to lead an early-stage startup during the crisis the world is facing today.From his start at JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley, as well as watching his father run a bread-and-pastry distribution business, Abbak learned the value of being frugal regardless of the circumstances, and to consider the long-term implications before making short-term decisions.”They should be short-term adjustments, not long-term pivots,” Abbak said of how startups should be thinking right now.Fantasy Life, cofounded by fantasy-sports personality Matthew Berry, runs an app that provides breaking-news alerts and information for gamblers and fantasy players. The company, founded in 2016, generates revenue by selling sponsorships around its breaking-news alerts, mainly during football season, from August to December.The company was preparing to launch breaking-news offerings around basketball and baseball this year, and exploring potential revenue streams like affiliate relationships with sportsbooks, when the coronavirus pandemic sh
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