Fansunite.com is a sports prediction platform that specializes in crowdsourcing sports picks to develop predictive models and data analytics, and which has been utilizing a virtual currency for the past four years.
With its FansUnite virtual currency, users are able to place fantasy wagers with absolutely zero monetary risk, track all their bets, and see their own and their peers’ betting history. The pro membership gives the users access to the top handicappers’ picks of the community, subject to certain criteria such as minimum bets and profit.
Since its founding in 2012, the company raised a total of $392,521 in three rounds and was acquired in August 2016 by Fantasy 6 Sports (a sports entertainment and technology company) for $2 million.
The Concept :
Through Fansunite.io, the team is planning to build the first decentralized sportsbook using the Ethereum blockchain to provide cheaper, more secure, verifiable and transparent betting.
The platform’s characteristics can be summarized as follows:
The Best Odds : FansUnite will charge a 1% margin instead of the 4.7% industry average. The company claims to be able to offer these odds due to the platform utilizing an ensemble of advanced machine learning algorithms, which enable the risk management team to be lean and efficient, requiring only a few members.
Fast Payouts : Thanks to a Hybrid Oracle, the platform aims to execute the bettors’ payouts almost immediately after the games end. FansUnite’s Hybrid Oracle will consist of five Data Oracles, each responsible for collecting data from an independent data source, and one Consensus Service, that will handle the business logic of aggregating these data feeds to reach consensus and resolve events. These API feeds update event information quickly, which means members get tokens back in their wallets almost immediately after an event.
Trustless Betting : FansUnite’s goal is to transition control over bet resolution from a third party, such as traditional sportsbooks, to smart contracts within the FansUnite platform. Smart contracts allow two sides to enter into an agreement contingent on the outcome of an event, with funds escrowed from each side prior to the event, and automatic resolution once the Hybrid Oracle resolves an event.
Transparency : Utilizing blockchain technology ensures that there is a concrete and auditable trail of transactions, so members can be assured that the data they are looking at is correct. FansUnite is also planning to make all the bettor transaction history accessible to all users of the platform. The company is relying on Secureplay (which develops blockchain technology allowing for accountability and transparency in fantasy sports) to provide such transparency while maintaining security and privacy.
Ethereum & Smart Contracts
FansUnite will utilize smart contracts to store all the pertinent information required to facilitate trust-less betting on the Ethereum blockchain, which includes:
- Event information such as start time and participants
- Bet information such as odds, bet type, and wager amount
- Oracles selected for providing outcome of the event.
Hybrid Oracle Solution
To grant the veracity of betting results pushed into the platform, FansUnite’s system will employ five Data Oracles, each responsible for requesting data from an independent data source. A Consensus Contract will then cross-match the data for the resolution of events and bets.
For example if a boxing match is happening between two opponent on a given date, an event will posted in sport betting feeds. The five different oracles will source the same information from five different feeds. If the information is the same, then its pushed into the chain, a new event is created and made available for bettors. It is FansUnite’s way of bypassing biased events and making sure events and outcomes are 100% true.
To reduce gas costs, the team split its Backend operations between the blockchain and a dedicated server. The consensus protocols on event and betting creation will be run outside of the chain.
To keep the platform’s speed optimal the team will also run some of its social components (discussions, chatting, following users, … ) on traditional databases. That will allow the team to sustain a scalable platform and reduce the costs related to the blockchain transactions drastically.
It is important to note that by using a centralized server to store the platform’s social modules data, FansUnite loses a bit of its claim to build a decentralized sports betting platform.
The platform takes into consideration edge cases, such as disputes. If any member judges the bets results wrong he can trigger a secondary grading of the event by placing a deposit equivalent to the greater of (1) FansUnite Tokens equivalent to $10, or (2) 5% of the disputed amount.
Once done, the FansUnite team will resort to manual review to double check the betting result.
Technical Process :
To create a new event, FansUnite will send frequent requests to independent API sports betting feeds sources. Once the consensus protocol is run and valid, the event is created on the blockchain and becomes available to bet on.
New users of the platform have to go through a KYC process to validate they are legally eligible to bet. Once validated, their public address will be stored permanently, and any bets submitted from their address will be accepted.
To smoothen the betting process, the members can submit bets directly from their wallets. The platforms also allows members to store their tokens within the platform, if need be, and bet directly from it.
Similar to the creation event, requests are going to be sent to API feeds (using an oracle service such as Oraclize) for the outcome of the event. Once consensus is reached across all five oracles, the outcome will be set on the event and trigger the resolution of bets made.
The FAN token will be used for all platform activities , including betting, paying out players, and rewards for participation. There is a finite supply of FAN (700,000,000), which is intended to circulate among users and within the FansUnite platform continuously (with no burning or deflation mechanism).
FansUnite Token holders will have the ability to choose the development path for the platform and to vote on on its features and services road map.
Tokens withheld (70,000,000) will be distributed between founders, advisors, and employees, subject to a lock-up schedule over 72 weeks. They will be distributed (20% at a time) from April 9th, 2018 to March 11th, 2019.
Community Incentive Program (80,000,000) includes tokens that will be allocated to both new members to kickstart their first betting experiences and reward the alreading existing bettors based on a set of metrics such as: betting volume, betting rationale, number of followers, and social sharing.
The Platform Supply Pool (200,000,000), which will be seeded with FansUnite tokens, will serve as the pool into which all losses are collected and out of which all winnings are paid. This pool is set to grow gradually, with large betting volumes and appropriately adjusted odds, via a portion of the 1% margin. This portion will be at least one quarter, and the remainder will go towards covering operational costs.
The Platform Supply Pool size is correlated with the betting volume as it serves as a safety net in case the wins exceed the losses. Stabilization mechanics can be triggered in case of extreme expansion (too many losses) or extreme depletion (too many wins). In case of expansion the team will redistribute tokens through its Community Incentive Program. In case of depletion, the team will pour a portion of its margin tokens into the pool and, in extreme cases, use a portion of the withheld tokens.