For a special truck-themed game on Jan. ET, HQ Trivia will give away an all-new 2019 Chevy Silverado to one randomly selected winner (out of everyone who answers all questions correctly) under a sponsorship pact with General Motors. The GM deal, which makes Chevy the exclusive auto sponsor for the first quarter of 2019, is worth at least $1 million, according to two sources. 8 at 9 p.m.
Other companies HQ Trivia has sold sponsorships to include Warner Bros. — which last year paid $3 million to promote three movies — as well as Fox, NBC, Universal Pictures, Google, Nike, Target, JPMorgan Chase, and MillerCoors.
HQ Trivia's shows usually have a larger group of concurrent users than live-streams on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter or Twitch, according to Teitel. HQ Trivia's audience has fallen off from the peak of its hype cycle — it routinely drew more than 1 million live viewers daily about a year ago — but the games still pull in a live crowd of around 500,000 or more, depending on the prize or special guests on the show.
HQ Trivia hosts games weekdays at 3 p.m. ET and on the weekends at 9 p.m. and 9 p.m. To win, players must correctly answer all 12 multiple-choice questions (with a 10-second time limit), which become increasingly difficult as the game progresses. ET.
That came after the company suffered a shock when co-founder and CEO Colin Kroll was found dead in his New York City apartment on Dec. 16 of an apparent drug overdose. Intermedia is now led by Rus Yusupov, HQ Trivia's other co-founder, who together with Kroll was one of the founders of now-defunct short-video service Vine.” />
HQ Trivia is still amassing live audiences bigger than many cable TV networks for its daily trivia competitions — and the app startup appears to be landing a few TV-size deals.
All told, HQ Trivia has generated over $10 million in advertising revenue since it began selling sponsorships in the first quarter of 2018, according to Brandon Teitel, senior VP of programming and partnerships.
Intermedia Labs, HQ Trivia's parent company, late last month launched its second game: HQ Words, in which players compete to figure out a puzzle a la "Wheel of Fortune" over 10 rounds.
Launched in August 2017, HQ Trivia has spawned numerous copycat competitors with the promise of letting users win real money, including Facebook Watch's Confetti.
"It’s an audience every cable television network would love to have," Teitel said, adding that HQ Trivia had more than 1 million players on Christmas Day last week. For what it's worth, HQ Trivia made Apple's chart of top free games for 2018, coming in at No. 16.
HQ Trivia went through an "initial mania," Teitel acknowledged, but he said that helped it build a base of recurring users that the company has been able to successfully monetize through advertising and in-app purchases (for "extra lives" when users get an answer wrong).
HQ Trivia will run Chevy commercial spots in the app throughout the month of January under the sponsorship deal. For the Jan. 8 GM-sponsored game, featuring popular host Scott Rogowksy, HQ Trivia also will give out a prize pool of $50,000 in cash for the other winners to split in addition to the Chevy Silverado (also worth about $50,000).
"The cost to produce HQ Trivia is a lot less than standard television," he said. Teitel claimed HQ Trivia is now profitable "on a per-show basis," although the company overall continues to operate in the red. "It’s on a green screen — it’s just a host on camera."

HQ Trivia also posted a statement on Twitter about Kroll's death, saying: "Our thoughts go out to his family, friends and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time."
Kroll and Yusupov also were two of the founders of six-second video app Vine, along with Dom Hofmann. Vine was acquired in October 2012, prior to its public launch, by Twitter — which then shut down Vine about four years later. In 2014, Vine was a recipient of Variety's Breakthrough in Technology Awards.
Prior to that, Kroll was an engineering manager in Yahoo's search and advertising technology group; he joined Yahoo with the Yahoo's 2007 acquisition of Right Media, where Kroll had been a software engineer. Before co-founding Vine, Kroll was CTO of Gilt Groupe’s Jetsetter travel site and mobile app where he also worked with worked with Yusupov and Hofmann.
Sunday, Dec. An NYPD rep said the department is awaiting results of the medical examiner's report to determine cause of death but confirmed that drugs appeared to be involved. New York Police Department officers responded at 12:18 a.m. 16, to a call by Kroll's girlfriend who was concerned about him. Police found Kroll's body surrounded by drug paraphernalia, TMZ reported. The police found him unresponsive in his SoHo residence and EMS staff pronounced him dead at the scene.
Kroll studied computer science at Oakland University in southeastern Michigan, according to his profile on Crunchbase.” />
He made the world and internet a better place. Rest in peace, brother." In a tweet Sunday, Yusupov wrote, "I will forever remember him for his kind soul and big heart.
Colin Kroll, co-founder of the Vine video app and the HQ Trivia game, was found dead in his Manhattan apartment early Sunday of an apparent drug overdose, Variety has confirmed. He was 35.


When HQ Trivia was trying to raise funding more than a year ago, the company was turned down by some venture capitalists who were wary of Kroll’s “alleged bad behavior,” which included “‘creepy’ behavior toward women that made them uncomfortable,” according to a Recode report that cited anonymous sources.
Today, I'm committed to building HQ Trivia into a culture-defining product and supporting the dedicated team that makes it all possible." I apologize to those people. I now realize that there are things I said and did that made some feel unappreciated or uncomfortable. In a statement earlier this year, Kroll acknowledged that "I was let go from Vine four years ago for poor management… Kroll had been Vine's general manager for a few months before he was fired by Twitter in 2014.
Kroll's latest venture was HQ Trivia, where he served as CEO of the company he co-founded with Rus Yusupov. HQ Trivia became a viral hit after launching in the summer of 2017 as a live-streaming game show that doles out real cash to player — a format that's been widely copied.