Business – Bypass catches $3.5M to help sports fans drink more beer


baseball beerLines at sports games are frustrating. Getting up for a beer can mean missing an entire inning, and indulging your craving for garlic fries could result in missing the biggest play of the game.

Bypass has raised $3.5 million to address this issue, because if there is one thing in this world to be afraid of, it’s angry, thirsty sports fans.

Bypass is a payments solution specifically designed for entertainment venues and sports stadiums. These locations must process a large amount of transactions quickly from a variety of vendors. Bypass has services for properties, concessionaires, sports fans, and developers to make the whole system more efficient.

Using tablets and accompanying software, people selling in the ballpark can accept payments using a tablet rather than a old school point-of-sale system. People working at fixed concession and merchandise stands can move the line along faster which increases sales, while hawkers walking around the stadium can more easily sell to people who already spent all their cash on foam fingers.

All of the transaction data is collected in the cloud, which properties and merchants can access to gain insights about their fans buying behavior during an event. On the consumer end, you can download a Bypass mobile app to order food and have it delivered to you seat. No more missed plays.

More modern, cloud-connected point-of-sale systems are increasingly making traditional cash registers obsolete. Square pioneered the way with its solution geared toward small businesses that could not afford expensive POS systems. However, businesses of all shapes and sizes have taken notice of the benefits these software-based payment products afford, like improved efficiency, data analytics, and greater flexibility.

While many Square clones have cropped up around the world, most of them still target small businesses. Bypass is applying this technology to a specific vertical, modifying the basic idea around the unique needs and requirements of the sports industry.

According to a report in TechCrunch, eBay and AEG led a strategic investment in Bypass, and combined with capital from well known sports, media, and entertainment figures like Texas Rangers owner and president (and Hall of Fame pitcher) Nolan Ryan, former San Antonio Spurs and Minnesota Vikings owner Red McCombs, and entertainment and sports exec Casey Wasserman, brings its total to $3.5 million. The money will be used to add more commerce entry points for its clients, which include members of the NFL, MLB, NBA, NCAA, NHL, MLS, universities, music venues, and sites like The Pepsi Center in Denver and the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Bypass in based in Austin, Texas.

Photo credit: allygirl520/Flickr 



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