Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University has launched the Sport Innovation Hub (SPIN).
The entrepreneurial hub aims to create an ecosystem for sport entrepreneurs by connecting them with industry experts to help them launch their ventures successfully in areas such as athlete and team performance, fan engagement, social tools for sports content, as well as production and distribution of digital sports content.
The announcement was made at the grand finale of the inaugural Next Big Idea in Sport (NBIS) competition, held in partnership with Rogers, at the DMZ yesterday afternoon.
“This signals a shift in Toronto being a leader in sport innovation and technology,” said Dean Steven Murphy, TRSM, who served as one of the seven judges at the competition. “This new hub will provide exciting opportunities for our students to engage with some of North America’s leading sport industry experts to push the boundaries in sport innovation.”
“SPIN will be a hub where entrepreneurs, students and business executives can connect to develop creative business solutions to enhance sport,” said Professor Cheri Bradish, Loretta Rogers Research Chair in Sport Marketing, who is the driving force behind the hub initiative. “Our aim is for the hub to become one of the leading sport innovation incubators in North America.”
SPIN will also host events such as competitions, hackathons and demo days to bring together sports entrepreneurs and industry experts create new innovations.
The Next Big Idea in Sport competition, a partnership between Ryerson University and Rogers, was launched in February. Ten startups, selected from 78 applications across Canada, incubated their business venture in Ryerson’s DMZ in the lead-up to the final event.
At the NBIS competition, eight startups pitched their ideas in front of a panel of seven distinguished judges from the sports, media and academic sectors.
The top three winners were:
- First place: PUSH, a wearable band that tracks and analyses athletes’ performance while reducing risk of injury ($50,000 cash prize)
- Second place: Stathletes, a comprehensive online database that analyses hockey players’ performance ($30,000 cash prize)
- Third place: VIDEOGAMI, a cloud-based platform enabling broadcasters to capture live content and share on social media platforms ($20,000 cash prize).