A link to Flair’s fundraiser can be found here.
This month, it started to become clear that the coronavirus pandemic was going to have a material impact on the global economy. One of the clear signs for me was that I noticed a few angel investors mentioning how they weren’t in a position to invest in Flair as their savings had just taken a large hit.
Up until a few weeks ago, I had a very siloed view that the way Flair was going to raise our seed round was from traditional angel, equity-based investment. After-all, it worked for our last two rounds, so why not this one too? The coronavirus outbreak has really changed my mindset. I now believe that any startup’s best chance of funding in this macro-climate is diversification. In my view, every early stage-founder needs to think outside the box and explore the many options to raising capital. They then need to choose to focus on a select few options that best suit their business. A month ago, it wouldn’t even have occurred to me that a donations-based crowdfund was a viable option for our business. Largely because I hadn’t properly sat down to think about the unique qualities of Flair that make us more suitable for one fundraising route over another.
So, we had a think about why we feel Flair is worth supporting. Here are some of the most important causes we stand for:
- The Importance of Community
Above all, our community is central to everything that we do at Flair. We’ve been able to unite tens of thousands of young people, by making them focus on what makes them similar (a shared passion for playing football), instead of what makes them different (which is what kids often do and leads to things like bullying). Our Instagram page is a testament to the strength of the community we’ve built.
2. The Power of Sport
Our vision is to become the global, digital platform for the next generation of team sports players. The social, physical and educational benefits of team sport are unquestionable. When Flair scales, we will see a hugely positive impact on society, as we are encouraging kids to take up team sport and enjoy playing it more. We’ve already seen kids joining teams because they’ve been inspired by our community. Also, those who were already part of teams have mentioned how they enjoy playing for their team more because of Flair. The long-run impact of this will be more kids playing more sport and to a later age. This will lead to less childhood obesity, improved self-esteem and stronger friendships.
In our co-founding team, we have 1 English, 42-year old parent and 2 mid-20s cousins of Ghanaian descent. Our designer and senior developer are French and our junior developer is Malaysian.
It’s important for society to see more diverse teams like ours running successful startups, as it’ll help break down stereotypes. Also, we’re living in a time where the number of racist incidents has unfortunately seen an uptick in professional football. Wouldn’t it be amazing if, the app that the next generation of kids use to digitise their football life, was led by such a diverse team?
We’ve also worked hard to ensure diversity runs right through our business, from our leadership right down to our community. We recently surveyed 75 members of our community and found that, between them, they’d qualify to play for 28 different national countries — so across our entire userbase, we’re pretty sure we could already host a Flair World Cup with at least 11 players playing for 32 countries.
4. The Growth of the Girls’ Game
When we launched the Flair app, we deliberately invited 50 boys and 50 girls to be our first 100 users. This was to reiterate that Flair is for everyone — after-all, our mission is to make every young football player feel like a pro. To this day, we continue to see a strong representation of girl players on the app (of this week’s new users, 60% were girls). We think that it’s important for boy and girl football players to gain exposure to each other from an early age, to overcome any misconceptions regarding gender stereotypes in football.
We embody a number of causes that are worth fighting for, so we’ve set out to raise as much as we can in a month, with an initial target of £50,000. In the meantime, we’re exploring other fundraising routes and working hard on product changes that help kids stay close to their teammates, keep busy and remain active until football restarts. Now more than ever, we believe it’s crucial for kids to stay connected to the sport they love.
If any of our causes resonate with you, we’d thoroughly appreciate your donation to our fundraise. We understand that times are tough, so we value anything that you are able to contribute.