Two years ago Paris natives Amélie Wisniak, 24, and Tamara Prud'homme, 25, were new to New York City and searching for a place to watch Paris Saint-Germain soccer matches. After calling a long list of bars, consulting expat friends and making an uncomfortable visit to a total dive, they stumbled into the unofficial headquarters of PSG fans in Manhattan, The Football Factory. "It was a really complex process," says Wisniak.
There had to be a better way. So the duo quit their marketing jobs and started SportChaser.com. Launched in October, the site links fans to nearby bars that are showing broadcasts of their favorite teams and provides details like the number of television screens, whether the sound will be on or off and if reservations are needed. SportChaser is running only in New York City, where 231 bars have signed up, but the cofounders hope to expand to Chicago, Boston and San Francisco in the next year.
With the World Cup approaching, the site is poised to become a resource for New York's melting pot of fans. "Our ultimate purpose is to help people get together," Wisniak says. "And the World Cup is such a unifying event, when you want to be with people with the same rooting interest."