FanDuel co-founder and former CEO Nigel Eccles is returning to the sports betting industry via a new business venture called BetDEX Labs. It is billed as “the world's first decentralized sports betting exchange.”
The platform is co-founded by Eccles and former FanDuel senior engineers Varun Sudhakar (CEO) and Stuart Tonner (CTO). It is built on the fast Solana blockchain, with the intention to deliver high speeds and low transaction costs while eliminating counterparty risk. In addition, “BetDEX is a permissionless protocol allowing anyone to build their own applications on top.”
“BetDEX aims to bring crypto to sports betting and revolutionize the industry for consumers,” said Eccles in a LinkedIn post. “It is going to be one incredible journey.” The company is currently hiring.
The FanDuel co-founder further announced the project will also be welcoming FanDuel Director of Talent Acquisition for Technology Andy Murray, and FanDuel engineers Pawel Witek, Drew Alexander Baird Spencer and Ewan Meldrum.
“We're actively building out a team of empathetic, intelligent and highly motivated individuals to revolutionize the sports betting industry with the power of the blockchain,” said Varun Sudhakar, BetDEX Labs CEO.
The venture promises, by being built on Solana, a $0.00025 average cost per transaction, to handle a volume of 50,000+ transactions per second and 400 millisecond block times, “the fastest blockchain in the world.”
BetDEX will launch with SOL native wallets such as Phantom. The company is targeting early 2022 for its Beta Launch. BetDEX is a remote-first venture, although its employees are mainly concentrated in Glasgow, Edinburgh and New York.
“Our team has deep experience in the sports betting industry spanning the past two decades,” claims BetDEX in its “About” section. “We launched the Flutter sports betting exchange, BETDAQ, FanDuel daily fantasy sports and the FanDuel sportsbook.”
The Solana blockchain is a solution that was built to rival Ethereum and, according to the newly-launched business, allows it “to develop a secure platform which can handle extremely high levels of turnover instantaneously at a negligible cost.”
Nigel Eccles and his wife Lesley co-founded FanDuel in 2009, along with Tom Griffiths, Rob Jones and Chris Stafford, launching the US market’s first daily fantasy sports (DFS) business.
In November 2017, Nigel Eccles left the company. He was replaced as CEO by Matt King, who was previously CFO. Co-founder Tom Griffiths left the company shortly thereafter, replaced by Nik Bonaddio, formerly of NumberFire, as Head of Product.