You know all those times you decide to go see your favorite sportsball team play against their arch-rival opponents right before the game but you don’t have a ticket? Mobile app Gametime was designed entirely for that use case, helping even the laziest of slackers to buy last-minute tickets on their phones moments before it’s time to enter their local arena.
It’s a lucrative business, and one that is growing fast — which is why Gametime has raised $4 million in funding led by Accel Partners. It’s also got a number of other investors, including sports folks like San Francisco Giants principal partner, Vancouver Whitecaps co-owner and former Yahoo COO Jeff Mallett, as well as Tibco founder and Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadive. Other investors include HotelTonight co-founders Sam Shank and Jared Simon, Box founder Aaron Levie, and StubHub founding executive Colin Evans.
Gametime gives sports fans a mobile-first way to gain entry to various sporting events. Whether it be baseball, football, hockey, basketball, or even soccer, Gametime tries to get more users to the game of their choice by speeding up the process of discovering, paying for, and using their tickets.
Instead of searching multiple aftermarket sales platforms for available seats or buying direct from the team’s website, Gametime finds the best rates on available tickets. By aggregating seats for sale from a wide range of resellers, it finds last-minute deals for fans from sellers that would otherwise lose out on the cost of their tickets.
Once users have purchased their seats, the app allows them to easily download tickets to their mobile phones in a way that can be scanned at the gate rather than printed at home.
Gametime CEO and founder Brad Griffith told me the company’s big advantage is speed and lowering the friction of purchasing seats. By surfacing only the best seats, keeping credit cards on file, and transferring tickets to a user’s mobile phone, he said the app can go from search to purchase to downloading a mobile ticket in minutes.
As a result, the company has been growing tremendously fast since launching in San Francisco early last year. For a while, the app only carried tickets to San Francisco Giants games, before eventually adding Golden State Warriors tickets as well.
Since then, it’s been rapidly adding teams and venues, and now has tickets on sale for teams in 14 different markets across the U.S. Due to that expansion, Gametime had seen ticket sales increase by 50 percent from July to August, and sales are up more than 600 percent since the beginning of the year.
The new funding should help accelerate its launch in more markets. The company, which currently has 16 employees, has raised a total of $5 million since being founded in early 2013.