SA startup mergers with Silicon Valley based platform Starsona Inc.

17 December 2020

Written by Ishani Chetti, ventureburn.com

A fan-celebrity engagement platform founded by former Springbok, Jean de Villiers, myFanPark has announced its merger with Silicon Valley-based celebrity engagement marketplace, Starsona Inc

As a result of the merger, myFanPark will enter the US market, opening doors for possible international investment and access to a wider customer base. In addition, the merger marks the startup’s fourth international market expansion in 2020. 

The success of the merger validates myFanPark as a leading global celebrity engagement platform.

In an official press release, Jean de Villiers former Springbok and co-founder of myFanPark comments that the merger not only benefits the company but largely impacts fans by improving their experiences on the platform. 

“We are thrilled to announce myFanPark’s merger with Silicon Valley-based celebrity engagement platform, Starsona, which not only further expands myFanPark’s global footprint from SA to India, Germany, Nigeria, and now the USA, but also gives fans around the world more unique and authentic ways to connect with those they admire most. With the merger, we not only welcome 2 400 stars to myFanPark.com but that we’ve made it possible for stars to offer their fans more than just a shoutout video, whether a DM message, Q&A session, social media engagements, and even live calls, anything is possible as the talent now have the opportunity to create their own unique experiences for their fans.”

myFanPark

Established in 2019, myFanPark aims to reimagine how talent and brands inspire, motivate, encourage, and uplift audiences all around the world through personalised and authentic interactions with celebrities across a range of industries. 

The tech startup has created an innovative platform that allows users to actively engage with celebrities via direct messaging, live phone calls and more. Users can receive a tailored video message from their favourite celebrity or public personality. 

With a focus on giving back to society, myFanPark has partnered with a number of causes, ensuring that when videos are purchased on the platform a percentage of the fee goes directly to the cause.

myFanPark users have reportedly rapidly increased by 429% which accelerated the percentage of total orders by 959%. 

As users increased on the platform, the company’s revenue increased by 283%, and the demand for certain talent increased by 500%. This led to myFanPark introducing new artists, athletes, entertainers, and influencers to connect to fans through the platform. The success of myFanPark in 2020 attracted Starsona Inc which led to a merger.

Joy Des Fountain, co-CEO of Starsona Inc. comments that the myFanPark platform offers a variety of ways to connect fans with their favourite celebrities.

“Our goal at myFanPark is to reimagine how people around the world are able to connect, engage, share with, and inspire each other. We can now offer an almost limitless range of ways for fans and celebrities from all over the world to forge authentic, highly personalised, and valuable relationships with each other. Celebrities registered on the new platform will now also have the ability to augment their fan and corporate engagements through a new range of individualised and unforgettable experiences. Going forward, in addition to shoutout videos, fans will be able to enjoy live calls, Q & A sessions, social media engagements, and even direct-message chats.”

myFanPark was established in 2019 and aims to reimagine how talent and brands inspire, motivate, encourage, and uplift audiences all around the world through personalised and authentic interactions.

The merger

The merger provides fans the opportunity to engage with over 2 400 stars from around the world this includes South African Springbok, Faf de Klerk, award-winning hip hop artist, Gigi LaMayne, Indian Premier League superstar, Robin Uthappa, German football legend, Roman Weidenfeller and more.  

Peter Karpas, co-CEO and founder of Starsona Inc. explains that the users’ increased demand for talent engagement on the platform allows for more business opportunities.

“The growing desire for fans to engage more directly with celebrities represents a cultural shift and massive opportunity for our business and the talent registered on the platform. Our goal now is to further entrench ourselves in our regions through key partnerships and commercial opportunities that allow admired talent to create unique and authentic experiences for their fans or corporate clients: think career advice from business leaders, song lyrics from musicians, or coaching tips from world-famous sporting heroes – now anything is possible.”

Not only will individuals utilise the merged platform but influential teams, organisations, and brands are encouraged to join the platform and widen the range of talent. Brands can build relationships with talent registered on the platform and accelerate exposure as the platform reaches over 250-million fans around the world. 

de Villiers, explains that the merger drives charity initiatives of myFanPark and allows celebrities on the platform to make users aware of their own charities.

“With the partnership, we are adding to our ‘Fans for Good’ initiative by increasing our charity and fundraising capabilities. This means that, in addition to donating a portion of the proceeds from each paid-for interaction, the myFanPark platform will now let celebrities profile their own charities and create fundraisers for specific causes or organisations."