Dan Nagler, J.D. / M.B.A. Sports Administration ’08, Attorney and Entrepreneur
Daniel Nagler has always had a passion for sports. While at STU he interned for the Florida Panthers, performed surveys for the Florida Marlins, worked at the Sony Ericsson Open, volunteered with the Super Bowl Host Committee, and attended the MLB Winter Meetings. He also sat on the STU NCAA transition committee and occasionally worked the shot clock at Bobcat basketball games. His love for sports and helping athletes led him to open South Beach Sports Agency and became a FIBA certified agent in 2008. His latest venture is InvolvedFan.com
, a crowdfunding website that allows fans to make donations to help fund lower ranked athletes, mainly tennis players, who cannot afford all the expenses that come with training and traveling.
Dan Nagler graduated from St. Thomas University with a dual J.D./M.B.A. degree, with a focus in Sports Administration in 2008. He works as a civil litigation attorney for Mitrani, Rynor, Adamsky & Toland out of the Westin office. Dan also serves as a product ambassador for FILA tennis and sits on the Dean's Advisory Board committee and the SpoAd Workgroup committee at St. Thomas University.
1. When did you start InvolvedFan.com and what lead you that decision?
Initial launch was in March 2012, and I re-launched a new version of the website in January 2013. I spent about 3 years as an agent for tennis players ranked around 300 in the world, and I learned that they earn very little money in prize winnings, and were not attractive to corporate sponsors. I also learned that they have huge expenses. I figured that the best people who help them out were sports enthusiasts who want to be more than a passive fan, and actually get involved in an athlete's career.
2. What kind of reward do you get from helping these athletes and being a social entrepreneur?
The biggest reward by far is fulfilling a previously unmet need of to two large groups - sports fans and professional athletes in individual sports. With InvolvedFan.com
, by supporting an athlete, the fan is allowing the athlete to have the tools they need to win, and is affecting the results – this is the ultimate in being a fan. At the same time, the athletes who work so hard are held back by financial restraints, and they are able to get the help they need from the fans.
3. How did St. Thomas University prepare you for this undertaking?
STU prepared me by getting me out in the field with internships, jobs, and other experiences with the Florida Panthers, Florida Marlins, Super Bowl Host Committee, MLB Winter Meetings, and Sony Open. There is nothing more valuable than learning on the job - you see how things really work. It also creates the opportunity to make connections in the industry, which is critical when you enter the job market. STU is so well connected in the South Florida sports community, the leading sports region in the country.
4. What are some important steps to take for the entrepreneurs trying to launch their own business, as you have?
Make sure your concept adds value to the consumers - that it meets their needs; make sure you have capital to make it happen; spend that capital wisely; work hard, very, very hard; be passionate; enjoy what you are doing. Understand the market that you are in, and know how to work within that market; learn from your mistakes; and do not give up – be resilient.
5. What’s next for Involved Fan?
Innovation, innovation, innovation. Staying three steps ahead of the industry we are in (crowdfunding). Innovation is the InvolvedFan.com
mantra from the business side of things. It is fun and exciting to come up with something new on a regular basis - having your company is not where entrepreneurship ends. It is where it starts.
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