Two-year-old VersusGame is a mobile platform where users can make pop culture predictions, and earn cash if their bets are proven correct. The company has forked over $17 million in cash prizes to 9.5 million players to date, it says, with games about celebrities, sports, entertainment, food, and more.
On the app, creators like Jack Wright and publishers like Radar Online pose questions like ‘Will the mask mandate officially end on airlines by Sept. 21?’ (This ability to pose questions is invite-only). Creators earn money based on the performance of their games, in terms of quantity of play. VersusGame vends in-app coins that can be used to place bets, and monetizes by taking a small cut of these purchases.
At VersusGame, Lentz will oversee all talent-related efforts, including monetization, content optimization, onboarding, and growth strategy.
Lentz formerly served as co-founder and CEO of TikTok talent management company TalentX, which was acquired by esports firm ReKTGlobal in March. He started his career as an assistant at WME, followed by stints at AT&T‘s influencer marketing initiative Hello Lab and at Fullscreen as head of creator partnerships. After departing TalentX, Lentz joined video network Triller as chief talent officer.
“Moreso than ever, talent are experiencing platform fatigue due to the ever-increasing number of platforms trying to claim their time and attention,” Lentz said in a statement. “What creators really need is a way to monetize audiences that moves away from the traditional ‘sticker-slap’ brand campaign, and helps talent authentically and organically connect with their fans, which VersusGame does to a T.”
VersusGame, founded by the entrepreneur John Vitti, has raised $12 million in venture funding to date from high-profile backers like Mark Pincus, Kevin Hart, Will.i.am, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Mark Burnett, and Nas.