Last week, I was honored to be one of the jury’ members for the 2019 StartupCup Competition, held during the (remote) World Football Summit. GSIC and LaLiga aimed to attract talent and ideas through this startup competition. The Semi-final bring 16 brilliant startups to pitch their products and services.

Here I would like to share my Top 5, what they do and why I believe they can deliver great products.

Immersiv.io

Immersiv.io works in the field of augmented reality to enhance fan experience for sports and esports events. They rely on the latest innovations (like machine learning, computer vision, real-time data) to design new ways for teams and leagues to engage their audience by sharing immersive and interactive experiences with their fans.

One of their solution – ARISE – provides fans with an unprecedented immersive experience, whether they be in the stadium or at home. Using Augmented Reality (AR) interactive content, fans have the possibility to directly interact with the players on the field through their mobile phone and to display real-time statistics such as player’s rankings, heat-map, speed or game trajectories. Other content like the lineups, the 3D event map or general match information can also be overlaid on the pitch throughout the game.

This company was first incubated at Le Tremplin (Paris, France), the first french innovation hub dedicated to sport and is now at Station F, in the Ubisoft program.

The Team behind it:

Emmanuelle R. is the co-founder of the company and currently act as CEO. She holds two Master(s) – one in Engineering and one in Design & Medias. This is most likely the reason why their products combine both cutting-edge tech with a real emphasis on UX & net Designs.

Stéphane Guérin is the other co-founder and CTO of the company. Former CTO of Netco Sports, a Parisian company that deliver < 200 mobile apps for major events (FIFA World Cup 2014, UEFA Euro 2016).

Website: https://www.immersiv.io/

beyond sport bv

Beyond Sport transforms positional tracking data into fully immersive and animated 3D simulations in 16 milliseconds (real time…), serving player development, match analysis, broadcasting and multi platform end consumer access across multiple sports.

Their product is the culmination of years of data analysis, computer vision, AI, human movement etc. The beauty of their product is that within those simulations anything is possible from a front end perspective which will attract a whole new audience. There is a myriad of use cases to be ideate from their solution and I believe what they have shown is only the beginning.

Sander Schouten is co-founder & CEO. Sander has a long career in many industries (Oil & Gas, Renewable energy). He recognized the sport and especially the Sport Tech as a rising market full of opportunities and build Beyond Sport BV.

Nicolaas Westerhof is the other founder & CTO of Beyond Sport. He Is an expert in virtual reality. Nicolaas was a former video and data analyst at AFC Ajax. He is now responsible for the development of the concept, and implementation of the product suite that aim to cover from club performance to consumer content.

Website: https://www.beyondsports.nl/

Idoven

The product is a software mainly based on Artificial Intelligence that analyzes long-lasting electrocardiograms to diagnose alterations in cardiac electrical activity and arrhythmias. The heart is monitored for days or weeks with a non-invasive sports holter shirt integrated into a tee shirt. The electrocardiogram is analyzed with the help of its artificial intelligence algorithms, converts the patterns of millions of beats into clinically relevant medical information. This technology improves the efficiency, speed and reliability of the diagnosis of cardiopathies and arrhythmias, facilitating the detection of cardiac diseases in their initial stages and preventing their progression.

They are part of the Google for Startups program as well as Lilly y UnLtd’s inHealth.

Sport buff.

Sport Buff is an innovative fan-driven company that combines sports broadcast, digital/ social fan engagement and live sports datacasts to create a truly unique business and product, delivering the best-in-class next generation of sports fan viewing, engagement and gamification, powered by AI and Machine Learning.

Sport Buff is unique as the world’s first AI & Machine Learning-driven platform to construct bespoke media content (buffs) alongside sports video action by interpreting sports video, datacasts and sports analytics. Uniquely, their solution uses Machine Learning to analyse and deconstruct sports data combined with expert content managers to drive viewer social interactions and challenges over the top of video content, which also adapts to the individual fan behaviours. Their product is delivered within partner platforms, empowering clients to new levels of audience engagement, retention, and insight.

SPONIX TECH

Sponix Tech is a technology company that provides solutions and services which helps broadcasters, TV channels and advertisers increase viewers and enhance fan experience. They offer two solutions, based on computer science and machine learning:

1-Feel the Match technology: They produce immersive contents such as Player Point of View video, in a INTEL TrueView style, with the specificity of being purely software-based.

2- Virtual Advertisement technology: They help the clubs, leagues, and TV channels to sale more digital sponsorship through their technology using proprietary algorythms to overlay sponsors in stadiums.

They were selected first among 700 companies worldwide in Qatar Sports Tech program, 2nd cohort, in Dec 2019 and can be seen in many Startup competition where their products strive.

I can’t wait to see how these startups will change the fan experience or e-health market in the next coming month. Clearly, it seems that A.R start to find their product-market fit in the BtoC or BtoBtoC area with company like Immersiv.io. Sport sponsorship will be transformed in the coming years as well with many new products/services entering the market such as sponsors overlay (Sponix), sponsors advertising (Sport Buff; for OTT platform or broadcaster) allowing better experience and thus, more engaged audience.

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