Fishbrain, the Swedish born social network for fishers, has grown hugely popular in the US, apparently becoming the largest platform of its kind in a country where angling is reported to be an activity shared by 40 million fishers.
Despite the company being a bit “fishy” investors have been attracted to Fishbrain like hungry cats; two days ago Fishbrain announced the closing of a funding round of $2,4 million, lead by Northzone and Active Venture Partners.
Other investors included in the catch are GP Bullhound and Edastra Venture Capital, as well as Mathias Ackermand, Rikard Steiber and ALMI, who are existing investors in the company. Earlier investors in FishBrain include Industrifonden, Umando, Henrik Torstensson, CEO of Lifesum,
FishBrain launched in the UK in March 2014 in association with the Angling Times, tapping into this active market by providing users with a tool to maximise the success of their fishing trip.
The app assists amateur fishers in catching larger quantities and bigger fish using a combination of meteorological and user submitted data. The data includes stuff like wave height, air temperature and humidity and general weather conditions for example, all information that allows a fisherman to better prepare his fishing trips and rod casting scheduling. The app allows users to share their fishing trips and catches with their peers, hence making it both a practical as well as social application with a vibrant community.
The basic app is freemium though it can be upgraded to premium for a fee of £3,99/month or alternatively £27,99/year. The premium version gives the user deeper insight and personal analysis that further improves an angler’s performance for example by predicting what bait would be most effective in catching a particular type of fish in a specific lake.
With 430,000 registered users and 130,00 logged catches within the app, Fishbrain claims to be the largest platform of its kind in the US, but that number still represents a fragment of the entire industry, which is why the investment comes at the right time; it will be used to accelerate product development, and to firmly establish FishBrain as the market leader in its space.
Angling in the US alone , according to Fishbrain, is an annual industry worth over $48 billion. In Brittain the figures are much lower in comparison, only about £3 million, but for a market leader to get a even a decent chunk from both slices would mean an impressive cut nonetheless.
CEO of FishBrain, Johan Attby, comments: “This is an exciting time for FishBrain, and we are delighted to welcome high calibre new investors Northzone, Active Venture Partners, GP Bullhound, and Edastra Venture Capital. The continued development of our product is hugely important to us, and we look forward to further expansion in international markets, and the opportunity to bring FishBrain to even more anglers and sports fishing fans worldwide.”
“There’s a great opportunity in niche social networks. Fishing is the world’s largest hobby and digitally underserved. FishBrain is the best and fastest growing app and social network for anglers. With its world class team, I am confident FishBrain will become the go-to app for fishing.”, said Tim He, Investment Manager at Northzone.