Posts Tagged ‘cdm sports’

CDM Sports Returns Via RG Ventures Deal with Liberty

Friday, March 11th, 2011

Part of the surprise over the “Fanball closing” announcement was that it appeared the doors were simply being shut without inventory moving on. This week, however, brought us the second acquisition of former Fanball holdings since that news.

As posted now at and and e-mailed to Fanball users:

RG Ventures, LLC announced today that it has completed its purchase of various assets from Liberty Sports Interactive, Inc. (”Fanball”) which includes all of the rights to a suite of Fantasy Challenge and Draft and Play games. John Brison and Charlie Wiegert, two of the original founders of CDM Fantasy Sports, and a group of former employees and industry veterans will operate the games for RG Ventures under the trade name “CDM Sports” beginning immediately.

The Company’s suite of games will include the legendary fantasy baseball Diamond Challenge, Football Challenge, Draft and Play Baseball, Draft and Play Football, and Fantasy Cup. The Company will begin taking registrations for its fantasy baseball games within a few days. The Company’s portfolio of challenge games will be extensive in the future and will likely include fantasy auto racing, and golf games.

The CDM name, of course, is familiar to anyone in the fantasy sports industry and many veteran players as it has been around from the early days. CDM was acquired by Fanball in 2008 and its games incorporated into the Fanball line.

This acquisition, of course, follows the recent move by STATS to buy a controlling share of Greg Ambrosius’ National Fantasy Championships. We’ll pass along any further info that comes our way.


Sources: Liberty Set to Close Fanball

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

It appears that Liberty Media has decided to shut down Fanball, according to various sources.

Rumors of such a possibility began to surface early Wednesday morning, and by Thursday morning was able to confirm with Fanball employees that Liberty had informed them Wednesday of the impending action and that they were not to speak publicly about the plans.

Of course, no official announcement has yet come from Fanball or Liberty, which might leave open the possibility of a different resolution here. We have heard from multiple sources that there will be a meeting with Liberty decision makers next week, though no specifics have been shared on the expected topics of that meeting.

If it comes to fruition, the closure will be a surprising development for a company that had made several high-profile acquisitions over the past several years, including the NFFC and NFBC.

It’s also a sad development for the industry in which many of us reside. Fanball has been a key player in the fantasy sports industry since before there was enough out there to call it an “industry.” It began back in 1993 as a magazine called Fantasy Football Weekly, created by Paul Charchian and Rob Phythian and quickly grew into a full-service fantasy company with games, content and — as of this year — a couple of spots in the lineup on Sirius XM’s fantasy sports channel.

FUN Technologies acquired the pieces that now combine to make up Fanball in 2005 and 2006, with Liberty Media acquiring FUN and all of its parts in 2007. One of those pieces, which became part of Fanball in 2006, was fellow fantasy veteran company CDM Sports.

“I’m very sad for all the dedicated employees and for the loyal customers who supported the games and services for almost 20 years,” Charlie Wiegert, co-founder of CDM, told Thursday of the apparent pending closure.

Should the news become official, we’ll look more into what might happen to various pieces, particularly the NFBC (and associated events), which is gearing up for the 2011 baseball season.

Should Liberty go through with the closure of Fanball, let’s just hope it stands as the story of one large corporation deciding that it no longer wanted to operate a specific portion of its business. Otherwise, it might serve as an ominous sign for independent fantasy businesses in a landscape increasingly populated by large companies with interests that don’t lie close enough to our games.


RotoHog-Sporting News Deal Aimed at Enhancing SN Games

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

As Sports Business Journal reported back on Monday, Sporting News has reached a multiyear deal with RotoHog to maintain and build the SN suite of fantasy games.

Sporting News users will still be able to play the same games that they are used to playing on, and we are working hard to ensure that the best features of those games remain intact in the new versions,” RotoHog business development director Garrett Brown told “We’ll also be adding new features that will make the games more enjoyable for fantasy players.”

The relationship will officially open with the coming football season, and the deal also includes games for baseball, golf, hockey and auto racing. No terms of the deal have been disclosed, but SBJ reports that “the pact is structured as a partnership that includes some base development fees but is primarily focused on revenue sharing.”

The partnership, which followed several months of negotiation, will also seek to extend SN’s reach into social networks and to mobile users — key areas for the present and near future of fantasy game offerings.

“All of our partners and potential partners are interested in ways to connect with the massive number of people interacting through social networks and mobile apps,” Brown said, noting that RotoHog places a strong emphasis on “building games that support integration into these formats.”

Sporting News‘ fantasy games were once built and operated by CDM Sports (now part of Fanball) and then Small World Fantasy Sports. SN then bought Small World in 2000 to create the Sporting News Fantasy Games property.


FSB Daily 5/15: DirecTV Takes Over Fun Tech

Friday, May 15th, 2009

A long overdue roundup of recent posts on the FSB News page.

- As part of the recent merger with Liberty Entertainment, DirecTV has assumed control of Fun Technologies — the parent company of Fanball, CDM Sports and Fantasy Cup.

- The Fantasy Action Sports League has launched a feature that allows competitors in its fantasy surfing contests to submit their own scores within 1 minute following a surfer’s ride. After a minute, the average of all user-submitted scores is compiled and applied. It sounds interesting for surf fans who know (or at least think they know) their stuff. It also sounds like a feature that could be often and possibly easily manipulated. Fortunately, it probably won’t be an issue for mainstream sports, which tend to rely on more concrete stats.

- Electronic Arts CFO Eric Brown says that “Very rapidly the PC is becoming the largest gaming platform in the world.” Although there’s really no competing console on which to play fantasy sprots, maybe the shift could mean more people (particularly younger people) online looking for things to play.

- Sports social-networking site has launched a free Fantasy Cricket application. Still mostly an oddity to American sports fans, cricket seems to be steadily building its online fantasy presence.

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