SBJ/June 4 - 10, 2001/No Topic Name

MyStudentAthlete.com stays to path of patience

MyStudentAthlete.com expects to have revenue of $100,000 and a loss of $250,000 in its first full year of fiscal operations, which concludes at the end of this month.

The site, which is designed to help high school athletes financially plan for college, is in the process of raising an additional $1 million from angel investors, the category of investor who makes very early investments in start-ups.

CEO Arman Rousta attributes his site's survival — at a time when some sports Internet sites are dissolving because of a lack of funding — to a modest approach.

"Part of the difference has been taking a patient path to our growth cycle," Rousta said. By that he means the site is still slowly developing its core product: a sophisticated analytical service that would help student athletes plan for college. But it is coming, he said.

Currently, MyStudent's revenue comes fully from providing electronic and Internet reservation services to sports facilities. But it plans to begin testing its first online student financial package, dubbed 401kid, next year.

The site also provides a range of free information, from nutritional advice to sports medicine to sports instruction.

The fledgling company has only five employees, but with the new money in tow, 70 percent of which has been secured, Rousta plans to double his staff. Around 80 percent of the new money will pay for product development, not marketing, he added. Many failed Internet companies overspent on marketing and then struggled when revenue failed to materialize.

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