SportsTech in May — A summary
It’s groundhog month… :)
Why so? In our last look-back we spoke about an emerging pattern in SportsTech and May was nothing else than a confirmation of this: SportsTech in 2021 shows big investments activities, an influx of NFT projects and more and more initiatives by big brands. Let’s have a look!
🤑 Big tickets and acquisitions
March generated over $1b of SportsTech investment with just four deals, in April we had three deals combining around. $300m. And May was not much behind with $270m across four deals:
- 💳 Oura raises $100m Series C round
- 💰 Animoca Brands raises $88m for its NFT/gaming activities
- 💸 FanCode gets $50m from Dream Sports
- 💲 Collectibles platform Rally raises $30m Series B
Besides that we have seen more interesting activities and big numbers
- 💸 KB Partners raises $100m SportsTech fund
- 🤑 Better Collective acquires betting media platform Action Network for $240m
- 🤝 Genius Sports acquires Second Spectrum
- 💳 Warner Media and Discover announce $150b streaming merger
The latter is obviously a ground-breaking deal, creating a streaming giant that will combine WarnerMedia assets with the Discovery TV portfolio and compete with Netflix and Disney+.
Great traction in SportsTech 2021!
👾 N to the F to the T
It’s still the mega trend of the year: NFTs. And even though the markets are struggling we believe this is just a natural process in the hype cycle journey in order to find the mechanics that really provide value. And it didn’t stop many players in the sports industry to come up with new drops and initiatives:
🏀 Euroleague Basketball announces NFT platform
⚽ MLB and Candy Digital partner for NFT initiatives
⚽ ManCity drops a championship collection
🥊 Floyd Mayweather launches his legacy collection
🥊 DAZN releases boxing NFTs
🎮 Virtus.pro launches esports NFTs
Quite some news for an industry that is still early! And to make sure you can follow all of them we have set up Nifty Sports - your single source of information about NFTs in sports (also on Instagram and Twitter). Make sure to subscribe to the weekly newsletter.
🚀 SportsTech initiatives from the big guns
In last month’s article we spoke about the SportsTech initiatives from Techstars, Startupbootcamp, a new innovation hub in Barcelona and the new MoveWell accelerator. May continued to deliver news in the SportsTech initiatives segment, but this time it was coming from the core of the sports industry as various household names had announcements for us:
- 🏀 NBA starts Launchpad initiative to work with startups
- ⚽ FIFA launches Football Innovation Program
- 📺 BT Sports launches broadcast innovation competition
- ⚽ Valencia CF selects 22 startups for its innovation hub
- ⚽ Real Madrid announces 2020 batch winners
While having a tech/startup focused initiative was more of a “nice to have” in the last couple of years this now seems to turn into a “must have”. Most of the big associations/leagues and many leading clubs run programs/hubs/etc. in order to stay at the forefront of developments. All this was likely accelerated by the pandemic as the industry realised how important digital assets and capabilities are.
🧹 Finishing up
And that is it, another article in our monthly series that looks back on what happened in the world of SportsTech. The next one will be published in the first week of July. In the meantime make sure to check out our other content:
- Industry-leading reports (Europe, North America, Asia-Pacific, Venture Capital, Football, Fitness)
- The “SportsTech Allstars” podcast
- Our blog with more articles
- Monthly newsletter
- SportsTech database
- LinkedIn group “Global SportsTech Network”
And have a look at Hello SportsTech, where we showcase cool, new SportsTech apps & devices and present the latest top news.
Have a great day!