Jason Jamarillo of Stat Hero discusses the challenges of the DFS space and why he created the company. Jamarillo includes a big announcement for mobile users of Stat Hero.
Show notes from Jason Jamarillo Interview
Ryan Knuppel: All right, welcome back to another episode of The Knup Sports Show. I’m your host Ryan Knuppel here with you each and every time. Thanks for giving us a little bit of your day just to join in listen to what we have going on in the world of igaming. Today, I’m joined by another special guest. I have Jason Jaramillo with me, Jason’s the founder and CEO of Stat Hero. Jason, are you with me?
Jason Jaramillo: Ryan! How’s it going, man?
Ryan Knuppel: Doing wonderful today. Thank you so much for being here. I’m enjoying a little bit of sun here in sunny Orlando, Florida. How about you today? You having a good day?
Jason Jaramillo: Having a good day. Yeah, absolutely. I’m in Illinois right now. It’s not as sunny, I’m sure as Orlando. But you know, we’re getting by over here, man.
Ryan Knuppel: Hey, that’s good. That’s good. Hey, man, I really appreciate being here, we’ll get into a little bit about Stat Hero and what’s going on with that product here soon. But first, tell the audience a little bit about yourself, how you kind of got into this space, and just a little bit about your background.
Jason Jaramillo: Sure, sure. You know, it’s funny is I started out in sales. Worked my way through, you know, medical device, things like that. But I always had a passion for sports, like I’m sure a lot of your audience has and I played baseball my whole life. I actually knew that as soon as the federal law in gaming was listed that I wanted to try something. There was a lot of ideas thrown at the wall and Stat Heroes stuck. I definitely wanted to solve a problem in the DFS, or sports betting space, because I’ve been doing it all my life. And I’m really passionate about it, something that I love to do. And so that that’s kind of how everything got started. And with Stat Hero, I knew that there was a couple problems out there that, especially in the DFS space, that I wanted to solve. One, I never won. Ever. And I consider myself to be, I mean, I’m not a genius in sports. But I’m not a non-genius in sports either. And I always was looking every time I played DFS as kind of a donation like, okay, like expecting to lose. And the whole point of playing DFS is to actually have a legitimate chance of winning. So that was something I wanted to take care of right away. Actually, give the user a chance to legitimately have a chance of winning every time they play. I’m sure we’ll go into that a little bit more, but that that’s the whole reason Stat Hero got started. We started the company in the beginning of 2019 and started developing the product.
Ryan Knuppel: Yeah, man, you’re so right. I mean, that was always such a specialty. Right after the days of FanDuel and DraftKings kind of really exploded in the DFS space, you really honestly played in those GPP matchups, those big tournaments, and you just knew you were throwing money away. It was like, I know I can’t win this, but I’m just so tempted to do it. It kind of did turn into this big problem in the industry. And that’s something that’s cool to hear that that was one of the main points that you’re trying to solve with Stat Hero because man, I remember back especially a few years back, that it was heart wrenching to even play because you’re like, I just know I can’t win this.
Jason Jaramillo: Well, they do a great job, you know, they do a great job. Just like the lottery does a great job where they throw that $230 million prize out at you. And you’re like, might as well be me. I’m going to go buy a couple lotto tickets. And it’s something that desperately worked on me. And I just wanted to see if there was something else out there I can offer to the DFS world.
Ryan Knuppel: Sure, sure. So Stat Hero. So, give me a little bit about it. So how long have you guys been around? You guys are fairly new, I believe. So, tell me a little bit about the business about when you guys started. And how things are going here in the beginning days?
Jason Jaramillo: Sure, sure. So, we did our beta last year, tested the market. I had a lot of great results, a lot of great feedback. We went back and we developed a little bit more, and we did our full launch August 8th of this year, just in time for football. That was our main focus to be ready for this season. And what Stat Hero is for people that are unfamiliar with us – we run fantasy survivor pools. And it goes back to what said about winning – why do people join survivor pools and everything, and it’s because it’s easy to play and you actually have a shot at winning that doesn’t require a ton of thought. And with Stat Hero, you do require skill to play, but not as much skill as you would need to spend three, four or five hours on other traditional DFS sites that to be competitive. With stat hero, how we differ from survivor pools is in a survivor pool, you have to pick a team to move on. With Stat hero, all you need to do is beat Stat Hero to move on. So, Stat Hero comes up with a team every day or NFL every week. And if you beat Stat Hero with your own lineup, you move on to the next round and you survive. And it’s just like a survivor pool, there’s people that get eliminated every round. The interesting thing about Stat Hero, and the thing that I wanted to change, is you don’t have to wait till the very end to get paid. Every time you beat Stat Hero, you’re getting paid something. And the way we do that is you’re getting a portion of the people that are getting eliminated entry fees every time you move on. So that instant gratification that you would on a sports bet, or on a daily fantasy you’re getting with statue. And the amazing thing about it, it also is you’re surviving and you’re playing multiple days with just one entry. You’re not having to re up every single day like you would a daily fantasy site, which sat here as long as you’re surviving, you’re sitting on that entry fee and you’re recouping that entry feedback as you play. That’s the main thing here.
Ryan Knuppel: Yeah. Yeah, I love that model. And like you said, survivors is a very well-known term and game in the NFL space especially. I’m curious how you, because survivor is not really well known in other areas besides NFL, so are you in other sports as well? Are you in NBA and MLB? And, and other places like that other sports?
Jason Jaramillo: Yeah, that’s a great question. Right? Because you’re right. I mean, NFL is the people think survivor pool, they think NFL, and it was really important for Stat Hero to be able to take on all sports. So yes, we’re taking on all sports, basketball, baseball, hockey, NASCAR, golf. And how we do it with baseball and basketball, it’s the same premise, but it’s every day. So, you’re able to play a survivor pool every single day. So instead of having to wait to make your picks weekly, you can now make your picks daily.
Ryan Knuppel: Very cool. Very cool. So, give me a little bit of insight on howthe Stat Hero lineup is formed? Is it meant to be like the optimal best lineup from your formulas and everything that can be out there? Or is it meant to be kind of an average lineup that people can beat?
Jason Jaramillo: Sure, well, it depends on the sport. And we do not choose any lineups because the people at stat hero have no bearing, and we do not make any of the money if we if we beat you, it just goes to the other players, that’s very important to know. If you’re losing, the money’s not coming to us, it goes to the winners. So, with that being said, we created an algorithm that chooses all lineups. The algorithm gets data saying that, hey, this player is injured, we’re going to substitute this player, or hey, this player may not play we might have to change the lineup. And it’s just like you’re playing your friend head to head is all it is. Another thing about it that I wanted to change is that you’re not facing 100,000 other lineups. And you know, the only person that you need to worry about beating to make any type of money is Stat Hero. So, you know who you’re playing in the very beginning, because that your releases their lineups. Before you need to make a choice. So, at all times, you kind of have a rival that you’re facing, every time you play, you know who you’re rooting for, you know who you’re rooting against. And it’s very simple. So as long as you’re beating steady, or you’re making money
and also, you find yourself rooting for Stat Hero when you know you’d be staggered because you want to Stat Hero to eliminate as many people as possible for you to make more money.
Ryan Knuppel: Interesting. Yeah, that’s an interesting concept. Yeah, once you beat them, you need them to beat everybody else. Yeah, that’s a very cool concept. Very neat. Very neat. Man survivor, I tell you what, and a little side note, survivor kills me every year in NFL last year. It was the who got me real survivor I’m talking about like the typical survivor, man I think last year and then this year, Colts week one knock me out. I’m like, come on. I can’t buy a break in NFL survivor.
Jason Jaramillo: It has another reason to you know that I love that hero concept. Because you’re able to play a new survivor pool every week like NFL week three. Starting up, you could start a brand-new survivor pool, you know, and at the same time, continue to play and make money on the ones that you’re already entered. Also, you can play on a Tuesday, you can play a baseball survivor pool. You know we have playoffs starting up and we’re really excited to launch our MLB playoff product and our golf product is our second most popular, which is, it’s actually my favorite next to football because golf is winner take all like a survivor pool would be, because you know, when it’s ending, it’s ending on the fourth day of the tournament. So, all you got to do is survive to the end, and you’re either getting that grand prize, or you’re splitting that grand prize. So smaller entries, easier chances to win. And that’s the whole premise. And we’ve had a lot of people call us, email us saying, man, I’ve won more on Stat Hero than I have on four years on DK or..So it’s a lot, we’re really glad to hear that, because that was the whole point of making this.
Ryan Knuppel: Awesome, awesome. So, a lot of the typical listeners of this show are probably more of your business minds in this industry. I have a question for you. I’m a little curious from a business side. So flip your switch here from, CEO of Stat Hero, what are some of the or maybe the single most biggest challenges you guys have had launching Stat Hero, and again, don’t have to give any of your industry secrets out or anything but this what’s one of the challenges that you have seen or went through? As you’ve launched Stat Hero?
Jason Jaramillo: Right. So, there have definitely been challenges launching a gaming company in an industry that’s constantly changing, right? You know, every time you look at the news of the paper or any type of gaming, a different state wants to get involved, or a different state is changing regulations. And we need to make sure and we are, we’re always up to date with that, you know, that’s the challenging part is that there’s new things that we need new policies, we need to implement new state laws, new applications, things like that. And on top of that, you know, COVID has definitely as not only affected us, in our home life, but as we’ve seen it affect sports on every level. Games are getting postponed, games are getting canceled. And we need to make sure that, for example, I know you’re a Cardinals fan, Cardinals didn’t have the smoothest transition into the baseball season in the beginning of the year. And we have people taking Cardinals players or the Cardinals team for their choices. So, we need to think on a diamond, we want to make sure that that things are as, as fair for the players as possible. The number one thing for me in the Stat Hero team is player experience. We’re not looking to be in competition with anybody. We know that if we have a great product, and the player has a great experience with the product, hopefully that they’ll continue to play and have a great time. So, when the COVID area when nobody knows the operators or the players know what could be happening on a given day, we always have to have make sure our development team is ready for any type of changes. So, I would say, to answer your question completely, there’s definitely challenges to opening up a company as any entrepreneur would know that. But in regards to sports and COVID, postponements, boycotts, I would say that would probably be the biggest challenge going on, especially this year, especially launching a product to you think that you’ve thought of everything until the NBA players decide, hey, we’re not going to play today. And then kkay, boom, we have to rebound. Okay, let’s do this. Let’s do that. Let’s give, give refunds, and, and so on and so forth.
Ryan Knuppel: So, yeah, that’s definitely been a good answer. I mean, yeah, business is always changing. And especially in this day and age when everything’s so unpredictable right now with what’s going to happen and especially in sports as well. It’s an ever-changing business, no matter what you’re in. So, I can imagine that’s been challenging. And then like you said, just the the state laws and things around that are always changing in this space. And, and they’re complex. I mean, there’s a lot of different laws in different states and things like that. So, keeping your finger on those is definitely important for a product like your yourselves. And yeah, I’m sure that’s a big challenge for you guys. So, looking forward, Yeah, go ahead.
Jason Jaramillo: I’m sorry. Oh, that’s just right. People are people I’m sure notice it. I mean, regarding your listeners, you’re saying they’re more business savvy, they’re very interested in business savvy topics and things. I’m sure you know, everybody notices that the plethora, like that word plethora of, DraftKings handles. You know, William Hill’s out there that they’re seeing banner ads and TV commercials on. You know, it is definitely this. This is the time where they’re trying to grab users and and sports bettors and their marketing fantasy sports, but at the same time, they want that sportsbook because they’re all looking for that edge and those players. So, it’s definitely a new era that I think is going to explode come 2021 in regards to the states that are going to be involved, the new players that are going to be involved. You see, Penn, Barstool Sports came out with their sportsbook, Penn National buys them. I think, in my, in my opinion, Bleacher Report is next. I have a feeling that because it’s all about content, it’s all about users. So, it’s actually really fun and interesting to see what’s going to happen in the future for all of this.
Ryan Knuppel: Yeah. And I mean, that brings up an interesting point, around all of this comes down to user acquisition, I mean, these all of the products are all fighting after the same users, right? They all want a piece of that, how much of a challenge is that for you? And what are you guys plans around user acquisition? I mean, are you have major marketing going out? Or are you more a little grassroots trying to bring in people. What’s your plan around that?
Jason Jaramillo: Obviously, both. Being a new product and a startup, we don’t have the bank rolls as some of the other companies out there. However we definitely had some solid partnerships that we’ve made. And we have a Sirius XM fantasy sports, we have a pro football focus that we that we’re partners with parties with Roto, Grinders, DFS Karma, companies like that. I want to be careful, because, we definitely, we closed our seed round, a multimillion-dollar round, we could afford to get bigger, to make our marketing go a lot faster. However, I want to make sure that the product still stays stable, meaning I don’t want to try to grow too fast, I want to make sure that we’re still are able to have a personal relationship with our players, and make sure that, we hear them when they’re saying, hey, we think that this product is great, but you guys ever consider something like this. We’re open to make the product as great as possible, because we know that day is going to come where we’re going to expand a lot bigger marketing and, and campaigns and so on. So how we’re growing right now, we’re 300% more past expectations and projections, just by word of mouth and a little marketing that we’ve done, just because of the user experience, and how different we are from the other other sites out there.
Ryan Knuppel: I love it. That’s awesome. That’s, uh, yeah, I mean, being different and unique is definitely a huge selling point in this space. And so, give you props for that. And I urge everyone listening, make sure you check it out. So, speaking of how, you guys have an app, is it a web based, tell the listeners a little bit about how they would even get playing on Stat Hero.
Jason Jaramillo: Why I’m so glad you asked that. Today’s the big news. And it’s going to be unleashed on your show, sir. We have been iOS, we launched iOS August 8th, like I said, and Android, for whatever reason Google Play is way behind on approving app updates. So a lot of our Android users are chomping at the bit and they’re saying, when are you going to be approved? When are you going to be approved? And so, we decided to completely concentrate on our desktop, which we are launching today. So, our desktop version is going to be able to be played by all Android all iOS or all, whoever doesn’t have those other two phones, which I couldn’t name them. But to that, so by today, people will be able to play our desktop, our desktop version is spectacular. The design, the functionality, everything about it, and we’re very proud of and we can’t wait for a lot of people to see it. So please look for us. Follow us on Twitter, or Instagram for that announcement. And that will be coming today.
Ryan Knuppel: Wow, you heard it here first. Well, hopefully first. I mean, depending on if we get this thing out right away. Now I got to get this thing released right away. So, we get that news out there. But that’s awesome. Jason, congrats on that. I know, that’s a big challenge, you know, dealing with the different platforms and all of that. So, congrats on that news. That’s amazing.
Jason Jaramillo: I appreciate that. Right. Yeah, it definitely took a lot of work and a lot of hours. But you know, we’re really proud of the product and we can’t wait for the Android users and the iOS users to use it, and to get their feedback on it. So, it’s a lot better on a bigger screen, at least I think so.
Ryan Knuppel: Awesome. Awesome, amazing. Well, Jason, I don’t want to take a lot of your time, I know you’re a busy man, running a company is never an easy task. And there’s always things to do. So, I appreciate your time here today. Any last words for the listeners, anything you want them to hear or just anything you didn’t get to cover that you want to talk about?
Jason Jaramillo: Oh, actually, I appreciate your time, Ryan. And I want to let the listeners know your listeners that we are going to run a special promo code for your listeners only. If they want to put the promo code KNUP, they’ll get a 25% match on their first deposit. So, I definitely excited to see people try it and get their feedback and get your feedback too as well, Ryan. And I appreciate you having me on the show.
Ryan Knuppel: Well, I’m already on I’m already on I didn’t even need the bonus code I’m in and I’m playing so I’m enjoying it. And I can’t wait for everybody listening to get out there as well. So that’s KNUP write the code KNUP.
Jason Jaramillo: KNUP. Exactly.
Ryan Knuppel: Awesome. Awesome. We’ll put that in the show notes. So, everyone listening StatHero.com download the download the iOS app, look for the desktop version, put in KNUP get a nice 25% off when you start a 25% match once you start and get going on Stat Hero start surviving start beating stat hero every day. Right? I mean, that’s the that’s the goal here.
Jason Jaramillo: Yeah, that’s definitely the goal. So yeah, I I’m excited. And we hope that your users enjoy it. Right.
Ryan Knuppel: Awesome. Jason, well, I appreciate your time. As always, if you ever need anything from us, or from anyone, just let us know. Jason, how would somebody get a hold of yourself or your company if they’d like to get a hold of you?
Jason Jaramillo: Sure. Uh, well, you know, for anything regarding Stat Hero related questions like the app, or you can email us at support at StatHero.com. And me personally, Jason@stat hero.com. We were very diligent on checking these emails are my emails but the support emails, you will get an answer back within three to four hours.
Ryan Knuppel: Very cool. Very cool. Well, there we go. There we had it. That’s Jason Jaramillo of Stat Hero. Thank you so much for listening in today. Everybody, appreciate it. Stay safe out there. Get out on Stat HJero. And as always, if you ever need anything for myself or Jason, just just holler and let us know. Jason, thanks again and have a great day.
Jason Jaramillo: You too, right. Thanks again.
Ryan Knuppel: All right. Bye. Bye. and tune in next time for the next show. All right. Bye. Bye, guys.
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