By: Joseph Barca, @BarkyCat
Front Office Sports is proud to have sat down with Kenny Campbell, Founder of FantasyTradex.com. FantasyTradex.com is a never-before seen fantasy football game in which the players are seen as stocks and users can invest their money into specific players. Kenny started this website after the 2014 NFL season with his friends and co-founders Jack Doyle and Ben Swilley. Kenny hopes to have created a game that everyone loves to play. Kenny was gracious enough to offer up his time and insight into the world of fantasy sports.
Was fantasy sports always an interest of yours? How did you break into your industry?
Growing up as a kid, I loved sports. I grew up in Buffalo, New York and I played football, basketball, track & field, baseball, and hockey. I knew I wanted to stay interested in sports but didn’t know what a career looked like. I thought maybe I could be a coach or end up somewhere in a front office.
Basically how I broke in was with my friends. We love playing fantasy sports and we were thinking it’d be fun to put together a new fantasy sports game. When we were bouncing around ideas, we thought maybe a stock market would be a really cool idea.
Story behind FantasyTradex.com? Who started it and how?
FantasyTradex.com started basically after last season. We thought we should make up a new fantasy game. FanDuel and DraftKings are killing it and we thought it would be fun to play off traditional fantasy football but put our own twist on it. There’s kind of a discrepancy of where the idea came from; I think it was my idea but my Co-Founder Jack thinks it was his idea so we just share the origin of it.
After we talked about the idea of the stock market, I ran from there. I started thinking about the algorithms, how the stock market would work and how to put together the flesh around the bones of it. Jack and I developed the game, while Ben oversaw the development of the website.
What’s the goal for this season? Ultimate Goal?
We really have no idea how this season is going to go because there is nothing like it. There are other fantasy sports game but nothing like this. We don’t have a giant budget for marketing so there is a lot of social media marketing, a lot of trying to do word-of-mouth type of stuff. We don’t really have huge expectations for this season but we know if the right people are talking about it, it will definitely help us grow.
The ultimate goal is to create something that people love to play. We want to get feedback from our users, we want to hear if they like certain aspects of it, if they think we should tweak the game and make it better in certain ways. So our ultimate goal is to create a game that we love and that other people love to play.
Important lessons you’ve learned?
We are in the process of learning every day. I think we’re going to learn a lot during this NFL season. We’re still in the beginning phase meaning we still have so much to learn ahead of us. I guess what I’ve learned up until now is how to get a website developed and think about marketing all on a budget, and we’re really interested in making new friends in the fantasy sports world. We’re hoping to learn a lot from others in the fantasy sports space and from our users.
Advice for students or young professionals?
Yes! One piece of advice I love to give people is if you have an idea, go for it. Don’t be afraid to make it happen. Take the next step. Don’t worry about people telling you that it’s not going to work. Failure is not something to be scared of, but something you can embrace as a learning experience. I think sometimes we don’t follow through with ideas because we doubt ourselves or think we don’t know how to take it to the next step. But you’ll never learn how to take those steps if you never try.
We would like to thank Kenny for his time and insights and we wish him the best in all his future endeavors!