• Comcast’s accelerator aims to boost sport startups
  • SportsTech will offer access to industry relationships, mentorships and partnerships
  • Partners already announced include NASCAR, U.S. Ski and Snowboard, and USA Swimming

skiier on a slope

SportsTech: Aims to boost sports startups

Six global sports brands and venture capitals have partnered with Comcast NBCUniversal to launch Sports Tech to champion sports technology startups.

The global accelerator programme aims to provide startups with direct access to strategic industry relationships, mentorships and partnership opportunities.

According to a statement from Comcast NBCUniversal the “unique international partnership” unites three of Comcast’s sports brands including BC Sports, Sky Sports and Golf Channel – alongside NASCAR and two US Olympic sports organisations: U.S. Ski and Snowboard, and USA Swimming.

SportsTech is the third accelerator created by Comcast NBCUniversal in the last three years with Comcast Ventures, the company’s San Francisco-based venture capital arm, will round out the partnership.

Each partner will serve on an advisory committee that influences the innovation priorities of SportsTech.

Comcast Cable chief business development officer Sam Schwartz said: “We are delighted to introduce SportsTech to our suite of accelerators to help founders build sports technology and products, refine their business models, tell their stories, and benefit from the unique assets and talent of Comcast NBCUniversal.

“Comcast NBCUniversal has some of the most prominent sports brands and we are excited to partner with founders through SportsTech.”

Sports Tech accelerator calls for companies

Beginning in August 2020, SportsTech will offer a three-month custom-tailored program for up to 10 startups. Initial focus areas will include technologies and products in several key categories:

  • Media & Entertainment
  • Fan & Player Engagement
  • Athlete & Player Performance
  • Team & Coach Success
  • Sports Venue & Event Innovation
  • Fantasy Sports & Sports Wagering
  • esports
  • Business of Sports

The deadline to submit an application for SportsTech is 15 May. The selected startups will reside in Atlanta for the duration of the program, operating out of SportsTech’s flagship location at The Battery at SunTrust Park, where Comcast’s The Farm accelerator is also based.

The programme will be directed by Boomtown Accelerators, a leading accelerator program headquartered in Boulder in the US, which operates The Farm for Comcast NBCUniversal and has established itself as a preeminent home for early-stage startups.

Comcast Cable vice president of startup partner development Jenna Kurath said: “The demand for sports technology across the globe has never been greater, yet most sports startups don’t have access to the resources they need to succeed nor an ability to develop relationships with the right people inside the industry.

“SportsTech will provide the curriculum and platform for founders to develop their ideas while obtaining mentorship from leaders in multiple sports, enabling them to further deploy their technologies to dramatically improve sports experiences for athletes and audiences alike.”

Sports Tech joins Comcast NBCUniversal’s LIFT Labs Accelerator, powered by TechStars, based out of the company’s global headquarters at the Comcast Technology Centre in Philadelphia, and The Farm, powered by Boomtown, located in Atlanta.