If the words “Bloomberg” and “fantasy football” seem incongruous, the financial media company is hoping to change that impression with the release of a new iPhone app it expects to be approved next week. The company created the Bloomberg Sports division a few months ago. The app will be will be sold through Apple’s App store for $1.99, for the iPhone; the iPad version will cost $4.99.
The mobile version comes a month after Bloomberg Sports signed distribution deals Fox Sports, USA Today, RotoHog and AdamCarolla.com to feature the Decision Maker subscription product, which sells for $7.95 for a season pass. The tool is available free to NFL.com fantasy players as part of a larger partnership between Bloomberg and the NFL and the league’s players union.
The new mobile app lets users see how any player matches up to others individually, all backed with Bloomberg’s “propriety scientific algorithms.”
Like rival Thomson Reuters (NYSE: TRI), Bloomberg is trying to broaden its appeal to a more general business audience, as its real-time news offerings have faced greater challenges from the internet. At the same time, the financial weakness of other media outlets have provided openings for both companies to move into. While Bloomberg Sports is certainly taking a bigger leap into the entertainment side of media, its Decision Maker app features analytics that demonstrate the companies market data DNA can be translated to other content categories.
The idea for creating a fantasy football product was generated last year by Bo Moon, Bloomberg’s head of business development and product’s division, and Jay Lee, who’s in charge of operations. After getting the go-ahead to see if they could provide market research for the project, the duo received permission from Bloomberg’s management board last March.