Kicking a new ball

Back before Labor Day I made a few tweets and status updates about my last day at Screenlife. It may have seemed I was being cryptic since I didn’t offer any new details. That caused a lot of friends to email for confirmation that I’d really left Screenlife and ask what I’m going to be doing next. After taking a week “offline” after Labor Day it’s time to fill everyone in.

Growing up in Kentucky if you had a round ball with air in it, you tried to dribble it and shoot jumpers, not start kicking it around the yard. I never learned how to play soccer as a kid and have to shamefully admit that despite living in Pioneer Square and seeing the march to the stadium several times, I have yet to make it to a Seattle Sounders game. As you’ll see, it may be time to start learning how to dribble with my feet.

Tomorrow is my first day as Chief Product Officer at Korrio. Korrio is a startup that launched in January 2011, though in reality our founder and CEO Steve Goldman first starting working on it in 2009. Steve’s vision is to create a platform that transforms the youth sports experience for organizers and administrators, coaches, parents and players. The idea of “more sport, less hassle” is driving Korrio to create a system that makes it easier for do everything from sign up for a league, organize teams, arrange carpools or even share photos from game day. With 45 million kids in the US playing team sports with millions of parents and coaches participating as well it’s a huge potential market that has been really underserved.

Korrio launched earlier this year and is already generating revenue with key partnerships with youth soccer teams and associations in Washington, Massachusetts, New York and many more. Korrio’s raised funding from Ignition Partners as well as some key angels. 

So how did I get involved? Brad Hefta-Gaub who I’ve known and respected since we worked together at RealNetworks, is Korrio’s CTO. When Brad and Steve started talking about how they wanted to expand their exec team by adding someone with a consumer products focus, Brad suggested me. Steve and I met for lunch soon after and the rest, they say, is history. I was really impressed with Steve and the entire team at Korrio. It includes top flight board members like Ignition’s John Conners, former CFO at Microsoft, and Martin Coles former COO at Starbucks and CEO at Reebok. The exec team has some great folks with experience at Unisys, Oracle, F5, Crescendo Networks and I’m excited to be a part of it. 

As the Chief Product Officer my role will be to help drive forward Korrio’s PlayFlow platform’s industry leading feature set. Our focus is to make sports management easy, integrated, safe and mobile. They team has a huge set of ideas from customers already so I’m going to be busy helping to prioritize those in addition to looking for new opportunities to make a great consumer service even better. While PlayFlow has been built today with soccer in mind we’re setting our sights on other sports like baseball, football and yes, basketball. 

I had a great time at Screenlife. It’s a company full of passionate people with a long history with the beloved Scene It? consumer brand. While I was there at SVP of Digital and head of the games studio  I helped expand their mobile products, launched Scene It? Daily the first truly cross platform Screenlife game, and put in motion new game projects for IPTV and downloadable console. While I hated to leave the team and all the great opportunities Screenlife has in front of it, the opportunity at Korrio was just too exciting. I couldn’t pass it up.

So that’s the story behind my new job. Korrio is located in SODO so I’m staying close to home. If you’re in the neighborhood let me know. Would be great to catch up and show you more about why Korrio got me excited enough to start kicking a new ball.

Published by Steve Banfield

Kentucky born, Seattle based. Entrepreneur. Team Builder. Photographer.

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