Interview Published December 13, 2000|
Brian Johnson, eteamz.com and Active.com
I thought it might be interesting to get a bit more on the acquisition
of eteamz.com by Active.com, so I dropped a note to Brian Johnson (who I have interviewed before), founder and president of eteamz.com.
BJ: We believe that the combination of eteamz and Active will enable us to become a profitable business and the dominant company in the online participatory sports and park/recreation activity market.
Active.com is a leader in the online participatory sports and recreational activities market-focused on providing online registration for thousands of events, leagues and park and recreational facilities. In fact, over 90% of all events providing online registration currently use Active.com's online registration and data management tools. Eteamz.com is currently one of the top 20 most trafficked sports sites on the web, provides market-leading tools for over 150,000 teams and 10,000 leagues from around the world and serves nearly 25 million page views per month.
Our strong community tools and market-leading position combined with Active.com's great management team, solid investment backing, and a proven business model creates a dominant company on track to reach profitability within the next 12 months.
BK: How many people are you moving south? Will there be attrition? What kind of people are you moving?
BJ: Active.com has 150 employees and while eteamz.com is a smaller company, there is a key team that will relocate to La Jolla, Calif. This includes some key management. I'll be joining the team as VP of Community, leading the eteamz.com product integration efforts. We'll be bringing web development, product development and customer service people as well. Positions and needs are still being considered so it's difficult to disclose hard numbers.
BK: How much overlap is there in your two sites?
BJ: This is an ideal combination that represents multiple product benefits for eteamz.com and Active.com customers. While eteamz.com has established a leadership position within the league and team sports market, Active.com has established leadership positions within the individual sports, league and team sports, and park and recreational activities markets.
Active.com's core league product is very targeted to the league administrator and provides high-end, high-utility web tools while the eteamz.com product provides easy-to-use, very engaging community tools for anyone associated with teams and leagues: the players, families and coaches. The combination creates a powerful product offering for leagues and provides multiple benefits including the ability for eteamz.com users to use Active.com's online fee payment/online registration tools while Active.com customers can access home page and community tools. In addition, Active.com will be able to leverage our community tools across not just the league market, but the individual sport events and park activities segments as well.
BK: How much was the deal driven by the capital/financing markets right now?
BJ: Our decision was clearly impacted by the capital markets. Although we were able to successfully execute our community-based business model by attracting a critical mass of users in a very cost-effective manner, we were still a relatively early revenue stage business. While we continued to receive support from both our investors and potential outside investors, we found it challenging to raise the funds necessary to become the consolidator in our space.
Further, when we looked at the market we realized that by merging with Active.com today we would create a clear, dominant leader within the participatory sports and activity space-making it difficult for others to receive additional funding while bringing us closer to profitability by lowering joint expenses and accelerating our revenue numbers.
Copyright (c) 2001 by Benjamin F. Kuo. All rights reserved.
May not be reprinted without permission.