SportsTech and Innovation finds another hub in France
Lyon, France was the place to be September 19–21 for SportsTech enthusiasts since sports and innovation were at the core of The SPORT UNLIMITECH Festival. The three-day event was held at the Matmut Stadium de Gerland, home of LOU Rugby, and was driven by French Rugby legend and all-time leading point scorer Frederic Michalak and Managing Director of Sport Unlimitech Yoann Duval.
According to Frederic, the primary goal was to bring researchers, industrialists and sportsmen together to share new ideas. As a result, the event had a number of academic partners including EM Lyon business school who had students present in big numbers. This ensured that there were plenty of young minds testing out all of the cool tech on display.
SPORT UNLIMITECH established Thursday and Friday as “Pro” days for industry professionals while Saturday was “General Public Day” where attendees were able to watch eSports competitions and participate in other activities tailored to a consumer audience.
The event had 4 primary tracks going: the LAB showcasing innovative technology, TALKS by industry leaders, CLUB providing workshops and networking opportunities and STADIUM which hosted competitions.
With a lot of great events on the schedule, we made sure to focus on the discussions surrounding SportsTech and startups.
SPORT UNLIMITECH, Outdoor Sports Valley and Le Tremplin de Paris & Co came together to organize the first stage of selection for the 3rd edition of Tremplin Invest on Friday afternoon. This was with the support of the Ministry of Sports and the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation.
At the end of this first stage of selection, two startups will be selected to join the grand finale of the Tremplin Invest which will take place during the Global Sport Week in Paris on February 5–7 2020.
Here’s a list of the startups that pitched.
bFAN Sports: A fan relationship management platform to enhance fan engagement and revenue.
Capsix Robotics: Robot that performs hands-free body care treatments based on protocols created by physiotherapists.
Carot: Nutritious cuisine designed for athletes, available at gyms and other practice sites.
CHIRON-IT: AI based system for athlete movement analysis with real-time feedback.
Clim8: Heating technology that makes any garment thermal and intelligent.
Dazzl: A cloud-based video production solution to capture, produce and distribute video around the world.
Digital Test Center: Product testing solution for sports equipment manufacturers and event organizers.
GoMyPartner: App that allows users to finance their sport through their purchases at partner merchants.
SportEasy: Team management solution for communication and organisation of games and practice across different sports.
Sportihome: Sports vacation discovery and booking
ST37: Tool for efficient video analysis and refereeing with a smart robotic camera.
Whympr: Tool to plan, organise and track mountain outings with access to thousands of summits and route descriptions.
SportsTech in Europe
On Friday afternoon there was a discussion about European SportsTech with a panel representing several different countries and perspectives (including SportsTechX!). We were joined on stage by Daniel Dumig (Asics), Omar El Zayat (Le Tremplin), Carsten Couchouron (Sport Tech Copenhagen), and Yann Roubert (LOU Rugby).
This session was followed by one on the changing world of finance and investment in SportsTech featuring some well known French investors and then a special session on AI in SportsTech by the Managing Director of Sports at Microsoft, Sebastian Lancestremère. So plenty of hot button issues were covered.
With Lyon famous for its culinary delights and the number of Michelin star restaurants it is home to, it was perhaps no surprise to see such a top-caliber event being held here. It was also especially nice to see Rugby being front and center, a sport otherwise underserved by SportsTech. The event was supported by a number of former French international Rugby stars including Sébastien Chabal and Thierry Dusautoir.
In fact, a little birdie told us that there will likely soon be a SportsTech accelerator announced from Lyon so watch this space!
Top class organisation and agenda, congrats to Frederic, Yoann and the Team!