The Fantasy Industry

Fantasy sports has gained significant mainstream popularity over the last few years. In 2012, fantasy leagues reaped over $1.5 billion in entry fees. They’re so popular, in fact, that they’ve inspired offbeat spin-offs like a fantasy economics league (which I wrote about last week). Just like any other big ticket industry, a number of firms have popped up to cater to its needs.

One example: Say the star quarterback of your fantasy team suffered a season-ending knee injury. Or, if you’re more disposed to participate in a fantasy economics league, your star department member unexpectedly developed an allergy to coffee. Either way, your team could be sunk for the season (or semester) and you would be out of any investment in entry fees for the league. Fantasy Sports Insurance, a business founded by Henry Olszewski, exists to mitigate that risk. For a fee, they will reimburse your losses in the case of a catastrophic stroke of bad luck.

Not only do these firms evidence America’s passion for fantasy sports, but they also illustrate the rapid versatility of our free market system. Entrepreneurs will meet pretty much any demand if they can make a profit. Planet Money contributor Lisa Chow wrote about these fantasy services in a post on their blog, which you can find here.

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