Sportening is best described as a social network for sports fans. It gives the fans a voice and lets them interact in a way that is on a different level to anything else available. We'd heard about Ivan’s idea a year before the actual company was founded or first funding was raised and were mesmerized by it and by Ivan himself. His ability to reinvent himself every couple of years gave us the confidence to do this investment even if it was pricey by our standards. The crazy thing was that two years later things panned out almost exactly as Ivan envisioned.
The crucial point for making the investment was that Sportening was set up from the beginning for extremely fast scaling - in terms of company culture, recruiting and forming teams, the role of people within those teams, responsibility for achieving goals, and of course in terms of analytics-based product development. Right from the start, we felt that they strived for the principles used in the most successful companies of this type in the World.
We are very proud to be a part of Sportening from the beginning (friends and family round) and delighted that Luka Modric, the greatest Croatian football player of all time, has joined us on this journey as an investor as well, although a year later. We often say that it is highly unlikely that someone from Croatia (or Europe in general) can push us to invest in the consumer app space but we sincerely hope we are going to encounter more founders like Ivan so we can do it so effortlessly.