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Inaugural Members include FEVO CEO Ari Daie, New Balance CMO Chris Davis, Barstool Sports CRO Deirdre Lester, OMD USA CEO John Osborn, Augeo CSO Vincent Sarafa and Chairman Shawn Murnan

NEW YORK (MAY 20, 2021) – Rival today announced the inaugural members of its Advisory Board, bringing together global business leaders from sports, tech, media and banking industries.

“Rival has been working to thoughtfully identify a diverse and dynamic group of advisors to underpin our recent growth and influence our business moving forward,” said Rival CEO Matt Virtue. “We’re honored to announce the appointments of Ari, Chris, Deirdre, John and Vincent to the Rival Advisory Board, with the support of our Co-Founder Shawn Murnan. Their collective guidance will help us expand our innovative business offerings for our partners who seek growth in gaming and esports.”

In just two years, Rival has quickly expanded its enterprise platform solution and partnered with several major league sports properties, media companies and organizations while also growing its leadership team and staff. The Advisory Board will support Rival’s long-term business strategy, assisting in ideation, innovation and relationship building. The inaugural members of Rival’s Advisory Board include:

Shawn Murnan, Rival Co-Founder and Chairman of the Rival Advisory Board

Murnan co-founded Rival and launched the business in 2019. Murnan is an investor with expertise in platform-based software and is Chairman of the Advisory Board.

Ari Daie, Founder and CEO at FEVO

Launched in 2016 by Daie, FEVO enables social buying. Its partnership roster includes more than 600 clients across major and minor leagues, NCAA organizations and the world’s largest music festivals. Prior to FEVO, Daie co-founded LiveAnalytics at Live Nation Entertainment and led strategic partnerships for Ticketmaster’s music and arts division. A serial tech entrepreneur, Daie also worked as an investment banker at Goldman Sachs. Daie attended Harvard University and graduated from the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business.

Chris Davis, CMO, Global Marketing and Sports Marketing and SVP, Global Merchandising at New Balance Athletics

For more than 13 years, Davis has been a leader at New Balance, overseeing brand management, global business unit management, sports marketing, global brand marketing and global product merchandising. With an entrepreneurial mindset, Davis is a progressive and creative leader, pioneering New Balance’s entry into basketball, baseball, global football and skateboarding. In his career, Davis has worked with properties and athletes including the NBA, the Boston Celtics, Liverpool Football Club, AS Roma, plus the Los Angeles Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard, Liverpool’s Sadio Mané and tennis player Coco Gauff, among several others. Davis is a graduate of Middlebury College.

Deirdre Lester, CRO at Barstool Sports

With more than 20 years of experience in media, sponsorship marketing and sales management, Lester joined Barstool Sports as Chief Revenue Officer in 2018. As one of the most popular and leading innovative media companies, Lester has led Barstool’s strategy to scale revenue through its advertising, partnerships and licensing and in her tenure, has expanded the operation from New York to Chicago and Los Angeles. Prior to Barstool, Lester held executive roles at Whistle Sports, Major League Baseball and Yahoo! Sports. Lester is a graduate of the University of Vermont.

John Osborn, CEO at OMD USA

As CEO of OMD USA, Osborn is a recognized media executive, leading the company since 2017. With his leadership, OMD has reignited its growth with new business accounts including The Home Depot, Georgia Pacific, CANVA and the NFL, among others. Prior to OMD, Osborn was President & CEO of BBDO New York for 13 years. Osborn is active outside of the office, serving as Chairman of the Board of the American Red Cross for Greater New York and Vice Chairman of Global Dignity. He also serves on the AAF and Ad Council Boards. Osborn received his bachelor’s from Dartmouth College and is an active member of its alumni community.

Vincent Sarafa, CSO at Augeo

Sarafa is Chief Strategy Officer at leading engagement and loyalty platform Augeo, overseeing the company’s mergers and acquisitions, strategic partnerships and business development. Prior to Augeo, Sarafa spent five years with Bruin Sports Capital. While at the firm, Bruin Sports Capital raised nearly $1 billion of capital and acquired a total of 14 companies. Prior to Bruin Capital, Sarafa spent four years in Deloitte’s Investment Banking division. Sarafa holds a bachelor’s from the University of Michigan and a master’s in accounting from Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business. Sarafa was a three-time varsity letterman in baseball, and a member of Michigan’s 2008 Big Ten Championship team.

For more information on Rival and its Advisory Board, please visit

About Rival

Rival provides a first-of-its-kind, enterprise platform solution that empowers companies and organizations to leverage the popularity of gaming and esports to acquire new customers, drive engagement, build a loyal community around their brands and create new revenue streams. Through its proprietary technology, Rival connects the massive global appeal and audience of gaming and esports with sports teams, leagues, brands and media properties. With operations in two continents, Rival’s current partnership roster includes the NBA’s Detroit Pistons, NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, Monumental Sports and Entertainment, Aston Villa of the English Premier League, Watford of EFL Championship, as well as organizations including the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU). For more information, visit

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