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Wednesday, June 19, 2024
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College Athletics

NIL Company Opendorse Raises $20M In Funding

  • Opendorse has landed $20 million in its latest funding round, Front Office Sports has learned.
  • In 2023, CEO Blake Lawrence predicts Opendorse will help athletes earn $100 million.
Nebraska wide receiver Trey Palmer runs past Iowa defenders
Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Name, image, and likeness company Opendorse has landed $20 million in its latest funding round, Front Office Sports has learned — bringing its total funding to about $40 million.

Multiple companies participated in the funding round, including Flyover Capital, Will Compton, Serra Ventures, former Formula One Managing Director Sean Bratches, and Advantage Capital.

Among other projects, Opendorse plans to use the money for a fan-subscription product called Opendorse Clubs, as well as to improve its NIL marketplace and increase its capacity for NIL collectives.

“This funding round is all about making sure that we have the capacity to keep up with the demand for our product and solution in the market,” CEO Blake Lawrence told Front Office Sports. 

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Opendorse is one of several that launched before the NIL era with brand building and social media marketing tools for schools and athletes. In July 2021, they began to offer resources to help college athletes earn money and help schools to monitor compliance and provide education. 

The company’s funding round suggests that investors have confidence in the brand as a potential leader in the crowded NIL space — in 2023, Lawrence predicts Opendorse will have the tools to help athletes earn $100 million on the platform.

But it also suggests the industry in general shows no signs of slowing. In the first year of NIL, close to $1 billion flowed through the newly minted market, though there was concern that the influx of brands and donors would eventually abate. 

Lawrence, however, believes the funding round is proof that financial executives expect NIL to continue to grow.

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