The term “Game Changer” is used in many ways. It can be referring to a moment in competition, a change to the rules, a particular player or a change in conditions leading into an event. It can also relate to products or technology that changes the experience forever. It’s a term however that is rarely unpacked, and one that comes from the gut, not necessarily the heart or the mind. You know when something is a “Game Changer”, you just don’t always know why.
The world or sports technology and innovation has developed at a rapid rate over the last 30yrs mostly in parallel with athletic performance. In recent times, however, it has been more around fan engagement as sports compete with, or leverage, the many options available to the multi device, multi-application, social media generations.
If you wish, you can consume sport from the comfort of your couch, in a virtual “Hospitality Box” with your best mates visible on screen, your favourite take away on your lap, your drink of choice in your hard, the love of your life by your side and multiple screens and devices at play. Information is coming at you from all angles, with analytics generated from the ball in game, computing in the cloud and arriving on your screen. It’s predictive, using machine learning algorithms, and it may or may not support the in game bet you put on. You are living the moment through your phone, that’s creating an Augmented Reality experience right in front of you. If that’s today – then what’s tomorrow.
Big Data has also become an important priority for sport. Facebook led the way with data predicting behaviours and sport is catching on. Interestingly betting has forced the need for official and auditable data as millions of dollars rely on their authenticity. The more complex issues are around sports creating whole of eco-system data platforms, which sounds logical but in reality, very complex. Unbundling numerous legacy systems, getting consensus from multiple stakeholders, and making sure the technology is not outdated by the time it’s launched are just some of the major problems. The SAAS model was born from overcoming these types of issues.
So how do we identify and determine if something is a “Game Changers”. For us in needs to meet the following 5 criteria:
- Within a growth sector in Sport i.e. Sports Tech or Sport Analytics
- Has a proven thesis with unique and protected Intellectual Property
- Has diverse applications that can be monetised in numerous ways
- Is scalable across multiple sports, regions and verticals – high performance, commercial and community
- Is positioned to benefit from the capabilities of XV Capital.
We’re always on the lookout for the next “Game Changer” that can make a positive impact on the global sporting community.