Recap: SPORTS TECH TOKYO World Demo Day

Scrum Ventures
Oct 9, 2019 · 7 min read

“This is not your traditional accelerator, so this is not your traditional demo day. To us, this is a celebration of a broaer cohort that makes up the SPORTS TECH TOKYO community. We wanted to celebrate all of those individuals — the 100 plus mentors, our finalists and the 159 cohort startups in the program, and the 300 plus attendees we have here today. We want people to connect, and connect at scale.” — Michael Proman, Managing Director, Scrum Ventures

On Tuesday, August 20th at Oracle Park in San Francisco we hosted the culminating event of our program SPORTS TECH TOKYO World Demo Day. As Scrum Ventures’ Michael Proman states above, this is not your traditional demo day.

World Demo Day was truly an industry-wide event to further the discussion on the impact technology is having on sports while celebrating the entire community from attendees to startups to program stakeholders — including our Japanese corporate partners, the sports advisory board, mentors, sponsors, investors, and leading sports professionals. Here are some highlights:

SPOTLIGHT ON THOUGHT LEADERSHIP: KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

We started the day with welcoming remarks from our program leads Michael Proman, Managing Director SPORTS TECH TOKYO at Scrum Ventures; Fumihiko Nakajima, SPORTS TECH TOKYO program owner and Senior Director, Business Development at DENTSU INC. and Tak Miyata, Founder and General Partner at Scrum Ventures.

Special guests such as Tim Andree, Chairman & CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network along with a selection of our core program partners such as ITOCHU Corporation, SoftBank Corp., Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc., Microsoft Japan Co., Ltd. , and CBC Co. Ltd., kicked off our speaking agenda followed by keynote sessions representing the diverse landscape of sports tech investment and innovation including:

The Changing Face of Sports Venture — a panel session led by Axios Reporter, Kia Kokalitcheva in which she interviewed panelists from various sectors of the sports industry on the evolution of sports tech investment and particular areas of interest to their respective organizations.

“Whether it’s looking at different streaming platforms or thinking about virtual reality products that we can offer our fans in international markets to create virtual homes — whatever the NFL and other leagues end up doing internationally, technology is going to be a key enabler.” — Brando Perkovich, Chief Investment Officer, the San Francisco 49ers

A special thanks to our panelists including Brano Perkovich, Chief Investment Officer at the San Francisco 49ers; Michael Spirito, Managing Director at Sapphire Ventures, Co-founder and co-lead investor of Sapphire Sport; Milos Ribic, Director at Adidas Corporate Ventures; and Kim Frisch, Vice President Corporate Development at World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).

STT Mentor Session — our evening panel brought together the diverse perspectives and invaluable insights from our mentors to discuss the latest industry trends and major areas of opportunity.

“We are big believers in trying to meet our customers where they are and we acknowledge that gaming and eSports are truly sports…Nike being historically a physical product company is now going through a new iteration of figuring out how we can recognize the importance of this because we know we have to be part of it to be authentic.” — Eric Mastalir, Senior Director, Global Industry Alliances at Nike

We are so grateful for the participation of our entire mentor and advisory board network — this group of talented and insightful individuals is a huge part of what makes STT really work. Our Mentor panel was led by Adam White, CEO at Front Office Sports interviewing Sezin Aksoy, SVP Global Data Strategy & Analytics at AEG/AXS; Max Barnett, tHead of Digital at Nielsen; Andrea Marini, President Americas at Deltatre; Eric Mastalir, Senior Director, Global Industry Alliances at Nike; Gayatri Sarkar, Managing Partner, Hype Capital; Steve Tseng, EVP at Pac12 Networks.

“I want to congratulate Scrum Ventures and Dentsu on creating such an immersive and inclusive community in sports. And that’s the idea — how can we work together and create an ecosystem that brings more capital deployment in the space. “ — Gayatri Sarkar, Managing Partner, Hype Capital

SPOTLIGHT ON INNOVATION: STARTUP DEMOS & NEW INITIATIVES

There was certainly no shortage of innovation during the day with demo booths from a large number of the STT startup cohort sprinkled throughout the club level of Oracle leading up to the mainstage, where our 12 Finalists each took a 3-minute spotlight to present their technologies to the world.

“At Misapplied Sciences we’re building a new display technology that we call parallel reality. We met Scrum in the middle of last year when we came out of stealth mode. They’ve been providing really great advice — acting as a sounding board for us — and they’re going to be instrumental for us moving into the Japanese market. “ — Albert Ng, Co-founder & CEO, Misapplied Sciences

STT PARTNERSHIP HIGHLIGHTS:

The following are a few of the partnerships that were announced at World Demo Day:

Omegawave Closed the Deal with Japanese Pro Sports Teams — STT Finalist and Finland based company, Omegawave, specializes in the development of training and performance management solutions. The company recently signed the Caterpillars, a team in Japan’s top football league; Fagiano Okayama, a Japanese pro soccer team; and Japan Triathlon Union.

“At SPORTS TECH TOKYO we have the chance to partner with other companies and can have open discussions that we normally wouldn’t because we might see them as competitors. Here we can talk in a private environment and really come together along with having access to the investment group and the Japanese market to help expand further into Asia.” — Gerard Bruen, CEO, Omegawave

4DReplay & CBC Co. Ltd. — STT Finalist and San Francisco based media technology company, 4DReplay brings 360-degree time-slicing video highlights to a variety of professional sports, commercials, movies, and events, and is signing a SEA sales partnership agreement with STT program partner CBC Co. Ltd. to expand into Thailand and throughout the region.

SportsCastr & SPOLABo — STT Finalist and NYC based ultra-low latency live video platform for sports that brings studio-quality features to anyone with an iPhone. SportsCastr is now working with SPOLABo, which has several OTT platforms in Japan, including V.TV.

3D Digital Venue & Yokohama F Marinos — Hailing from Barcelona, 3D Digital Venue provides interactive digital venue management solutions to sports and entertainment venues across the globe. They will be implementing their product on the website of Yokohama F Marinos, one of the most successful Japanese association football teams, to provide the first virtual-view ticketing experience in J-League.

WHAT’S NEXT

World Demo Day gave our Finalists and the STT community a chance to network and present the innovative solutions they’ve developed that align with the needs and opportunities of our Japanese program partners. While we are proud of their immediate accomplishments and a successful WDD, we look forward to continuing to support these partnerships and broad-based growth in Asia and beyond.

“We set out on this journey about a year ago. Bringing together companies of all different stages, all different geographic regions, and all the different areas of focus within sports tech. Our primary job was to connect them to opportunities in Japan but what we uncovered along the journey, is the tremendous amount of opportunity all players stand to benefit from by bringing together this community and building a platform that transcends Asia. Whether it’s connecting startups with the venture audience, or otherwise, we feel this is a great reflection of innovation coming into this industry.” — Michael Proman, Managing Director, Scrum Ventures

THE STATS:

Total Attendees: 347

STT Startups: 101

Startup Demos: 25

Partners / Advisory Board / Mentors in Attendance: 45

Investors in Attendance: 47

Networking Opportunities: Infinite

Recommended Reading:

Industry Insights: The Current State of Sports Technology

Kickstarting the Next Phase with our SPORTS TECH TOKYO Finalists

SPORTS TECH TOKYO Announces Inaugural Cohort of 12 Finalists

STT in the Press:

Sports Tech Tokyo’s World Demo Day Arrives In San Francisco As It Focuses On Technology’s Impact On Sports

theCube: Sports Tech World Demo Day 2019Misapplied Sciences: Personalized pixels will transform stadium and airport experiences

‘Sports tech’ startups gain pace with less than a year to go before Tokyo Games

Are you watching this? How tech is transforming the sports-viewing experience

Scrum Ventures

We are an early stage venture firm.

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