Jens Hilgers (Co-Founder, CEO), Markus Fuhrmann (Co-Founder), and Christian Gruber (Co-Founder) © Nils Lucas
What inspired you to found your startup?
We started Dojo Madness with the vision of building tools that help gamers master their game. The vision was based on the issues we faced in our day-to-day gaming experience. We thought that we couldn’t be the only ones wanting smart tools to help us master those games. So we launched Dojo Madness and built tools that helped to solve our problems and very likely the ones that others were also facing.
How do you define success for yourself and your company?
We succeed as a company if we deliver true value to our customers and are able to build a sustainable business on top of our services. The satisfaction of our customers, and our apps and services having a real impact on how they enjoy their games and entertainment time, is what matters the most for us. Or a bit differently: Whenever we help players to truly improve at their game and increase their competitive performance, we do well.
Is there anything you’d do differently if you could do it again?
Get more done.
What problem does your product solve?
We have several products that enable esports players to improve. Dojo’s first line of products, the SUMO apps, are virtual coaching apps for League of Legends, Overwatch,and Dota 2. LOLSUMO, OVERSUMO, and DOTASUMO provide personalized guides and actionable insights based on individualized game data for over one million monthly active users. We also have a platform called Shadow.gg that provides pro teams with analytics & data visualizations for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, and Dota 2. In addition, we have a B2B data service that provides high-quality solutions for live in-game betting in e-sports.
Where do you see your company in 1/5/10 years?
We believe in esports becoming the dominant global sport in the next decades. We fit into this massive esports industry by being the platform for player improvement. If we continue to succeed with our services and products, I expect us to provide great value to hundreds of millions of gamers through our products and services in the next ten years. What our checkpoints in between now and then look like, I will leave to the attentative follower to watch unfold.
How are you different?
Our coaching apps are the only mobile first solution on the market that offers real-time, personalized insights based on analyzing billions of game events. Similarly, our data service provides real-time probabilities for both pre-match and live betting events using the best models in the industry.
How often does your product/service show up in a user’s day or week?
Our users use our services several times a week, as they follow their gaming passion. Often several times a day.
Impact: how are you doing good and building a better future?
E-sports provide great educational value including mastery of skills, teamwork, analysing strength and weaknesses and improving on each of those. We help people to identify their strength and weaknesses and focus on improving themselves.
How has the startup scene in Berlin changed?
Not surprisingly, it has matured a lot. Less buzzword-bingo, less wanna-be-entrepreneurs. More real achievers and more real world problems being solved.
What are the pros and cons of launching your startup from Berlin?
Berlin has a couple of things going for itself: First, it is the capital of the biggest European market. Second, the city is unlike rest of Germany: it’s wild, it’s bankrupt, it’s multicultural and it has to re-invent itself. Third: Berlin (due to location) attracts lots of talent from Eastern Europe, Russia and Ukraine, which happens to be some of the best technical talent you can get. Fourth: Berlin has a great living quality at affordable rates. Finally Berlin has managed to build critical mass of tech startups and video games companies and finally there is not much of a question anymore within Germany over where the best place is to build your startup. There was an unhealthy competition between the major cities in Germany, which I personally feel is finally over, with Berlin having emerged as clear winner.
Bonus Question: Anything else that we need to know about you?
DOJO Madness was featured in “The Hundert Vol. 10 – Startups of Berlin“, October 2017.