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Early History of OZmium Pty Ltd

The first 7 years

January 2000
OZmium is registered as a Pty Ltd company with four directors and equal shareholders who share an involvement in tournament chess. They are Sean Watharow, Matthew Drummond, Michael Molnar and Guy West. Work commences on the Smartgambler website.

May 2000
OZmium is engaged as a consultant to Professional Punter Publishing, owned by horse racing expert Neil Davis. His company trades through its Australian thoroughbred horse racing website Pro-Punter, offering information, advice and ratings.
OZmium's team, which includes self taught search engine optimisation expert Michael Molnar, is able to greatly increase traffic flow to Pro-Punter, redesign the site and help turn it into one of the premier thoroughbred racing sites in Australia.

January 2001
OZmium acquires Australian thoroughbred racing website Pro-Punter via a scrip deal and Neil Davis joins the OZmium board of directors, taking the number to five.

March 2001
The Age newspaper's Sunday Life magazine runs an article on 'Beating the Recession' by journalist Everard Hunder. OZmium's now completed second website Smartgambler is used as a reference source on gambling information.

November 2001
OZmium's Director of Racing Services Neil Davis is used for expert comments in 'The Age Online' during the Melbourne Cup carnival.

February 2002
OZmium secures the services of Professor Stephen Clarke of Swinburne University, Australia's best known sports statistician. Clarke joins OZmium as AFL football betting analyst.

May 2002
OZmium introduces secure online credit card facilities onto its websites after procuring a merchant facility with the ANZ bank.

August 2002
OZmium Managing Director Guy West is interviewed on Channel Nine's 'A Current Affair' about poker machines.

September 2002
Professional tennis bettor and expert Tony Messenger is signed by OZmium to provide ATP tour information to OZmium clients.

October 2002
OZmium's Director of Racing Services, Neil Davis quoted in Melbourne's Age newspaper in an article called 'No sure thing' by journalist Murray Mottram, attacking 'Track-er Money Generator' software as 'doomed to fail' and making other gambling related comments.

November 2002
OZmium secures the services of Professor Ray Stefani of the University of California, Long Beach. Stefani is internationally recognised for his expertise in sports statistics and mathematical modelling and advises clients on European soccer and Super 12 Rugby Union.

January 2003
OZmium secures the services of Dr Alan McCabe of James Cook University, Qld. McCabe, a researcher in artificial intelligence, attracted international media interest due to his MAIT Rugby League tipping program.

July 2003
OZmium strikes a deal with American sports betting company Baseball Formula, to provide coverage of US Major League Baseball.

January 2004
OZmium secures the services of Derek Fearnley, England's leading golf betting expert, to provide information on Pro Tour Golf betting.

May 2004
OZmium contracts IT Support Partners as its in-house technical services provider and purchases its own dedicated server. OZmium websites are migrated to the new server.

June 2004
OZmium Managing Director Guy West is engaged to rewrite a section of a pamphlet aimed at problem gamblers, distributed by the organisation 'Gambler's Help' .

June 2004
OZmium signs Rugby Union expert Stefan Yelas to partner Professor Ray Stefani in expanding the Super Twelves package to incorporate all international Rugby Union fixtures.

July 2004
OZmium secures the services of English Tennis betting guru Nick Wheatley from NelsonBetAdvisor, to take over from the departing Tony Messenger.

July 2004
English Golf betting expert Scott Miller is subcontracted to run the Golf group, taking over from his business partner Derek Fearnley.

July 2004
OZmium pays a five figure sum in settlement of a threatened defamation action by a company selling racing systems, lampooned as rip-offs in an article on the Pro-Punter website. OZmium subsequently removes any articles from its websites that could potentially be viewed as defamatory and curtails its role as a commentator on racing industry scams.

August 2004
American NFL is introduced, run by Football Formula, the same handicapping team covering MLB for OZmium since July 2003.

August 2004
OZmium signs American sports handicappers Masterbets to provide American NBA coverage.

August 2004
Gambler's Help releases G-Pack, containing material provided by OZmium Managing Director Guy West in its 'Myths and Maths' section.

December 2004
OZmium secures Australia's most well known Blackjack player and card counter, Andrew Scott, to run the Smartgambler Blackjack section.

January 2005
Dr Alan McCabe retires as NRL handicapper and Professor Stephen Clarke takes over.

July 2005
OZmium welcomes one of Australia's leading Texas Holdem players, Andrew 'Lucky' LeRoy, to run the Smartgambler Poker section.

July 2005
Smartgambler Poker expert Andrew LeRoy is interviewed about the game on Canberra's Louise Maher drive time radio show, after Joe Hachem's victory in the 2005 World Series of Poker Main Event.

August 2005
The Australian National Library seeks and is given permission to electronically archive the Smartgambler website.

September 2005
OZmium Managing Director Guy West makes a second appearance on Channel Seven's Today Tonight show, commenting on poker machines and the techniques used to keep people playing them.

October 2005
OZmium signs former Cricket training centre owner Damien Oborne as Marketing Manager and Cricket expert.

June 2006
OZmium signs experienced Cricket bettor Blair McFarlane to take over the new Cricket group when Damien Oborne is unable to continue and Cricket is offered free of charge to people opening a new account with selected bookmakers.
The building of affiliate income streams is identified as the future prime revenue earning model for OZmium. A strategic decision is taken to phase out subscription packages for Tennis, Soccer, Golf, NBA Basketball and NFL Football.

July 2006
OZmium's move away from subscription handicapping continues with the introduction of free coverage of international Rugby Union, replacing the previous subscription model.

August 2006
Andrew LeRoy retires as content provider for the Smartgambler Poker section.

February 2007
CardAcademy.com takes over content provision for the Smartgambler Poker section. The CardAcademy team includes leading Australian Poker identities such as 1995 World Poker Champion Joe Hachem.

March 2007
OZmium decides to drop subscription coverage of Australian NRL and American MLB at the end of the 2007 seasons, reducing subscription services in 2008 to just AFL Football and Australian horse racing, with free coverage of Rugby Union and Cricket.

April 2007
OZmium Blackjack expert Andrew Scott becomes Gambling Correspondent for well known Australian news and current affairs analysis website, Crikey.com.au. Scott's articles and reports on various gambling related matters begin appearing on Smartgambler.

May 2007
Former OZmium Tennis handicapper Tony Messenger returns to offer a free Tennis betting group.

June 2007
Income generated by OZmium during the financial year ending 30-6-2007 is the highest achieved
to date. Income has exceeded the previous year on every occasion since the company was founded in January, 2000. Gradual restructuring down to just two directors from as many as five in its early years has also reduced outgoings, as has ongoing capital investment in IT solutions.

August 2007
A strategic decision is taken to turn OZmium's core business of horse racing handicapping into a free
service. This almost completes OZmium's departure from the handicapping industry, with AFL football the only remaining subscription tipping service, due to demand from the regular members.


 

TODAY
OZmium Pty Ltd currently has two main areas of business, affiliate income from Australian corporate bookmakers and advertising revenue from its websites. There is also a subsidiary revenue flow from partnering deals with racing software companies and from the Smartgambler AFL betting group. OZmium remains privately owned and pays dividends on an annual basis.