Sportradar Innovation: An Overview

Stats, integrity, esports, widgets, OTT and streaming – Sportradar is renowned for being one of the world’s leading suppliers of data and technology… and innovation is one area that underpins them all.

Innovation is key to Sportradar’s future and it’s why we are involved in a wide range of next-gen projects, both internally and externally, to offer opportunities, with sports data, to up-and-coming companies and entrepreneurs.

While seeking to offer internal employees an avenue to experiment and improve our offering with new products and services, Sportradar also partners with Universities and education providers and supplies data to hackathons and start up businesses.

At the start of #RadarInnovation Week, here are the primary pillars of Sportradar’s innovation work.

Internal avenues and The Innovation Funnel

What is it?

The Innovation Funnel serves as a process to allow the create and growth of products and ideas from within Sportradar’s individual business units.

The process consists of the Ideation, Game Plan, Development, Testing and Graduation stages with each level seeing the project either advance or be amended and improved based on recommendations from either someone within the relevant business unit or the innovation department.

Who’s involved?

The Innovation team includes members from our offices in Linz, Munich, Vienna, Ljubljana and the US, with the process open to all departments within the company.

What’s the outcome?

A wide range of ideas have come about internally, spread across Product Innovations, Process Innovations and activities including the 48-hour Innovation Hack and Hack Days. Plenty more remain in the pipeline to be finessed and worked on.

Innovation and Business Development Manager, Luka Pataky, says: “We see the Innovation Funnel, and the wider Innovation area, as a way of opening up new opportunities to grow and create within the company.

“Exploring innovation streams and opportunities not only generates future business but puts us firmly at the forefront of next generation sports technology.”

External data suppliers

What is it?

Our data and API feeds are used in a multitude of ways to help promising start ups, next generation hackathons and other external events that foster ideas and products. Event examples include the recent Baseball Hack Day held in various cities across the United States, Google Cloud’s use of Sportradar data during March Madness and the upcoming European Handball HackDays.

Alongside such events, we sponsor awards focused on start ups, and continue to see great success with Acceleradar – the US-based programme that offers eligible start ups free access to Sportradar data and certain other products.

Who’s involved?

Hackathons generally involve young innovators with a passion for sports and/or data. However, the range of these type of events mean the kind of participants vary hugely. Similarly, plenty of different start ups can benefit from the Acceleradar programme, albeit with a number of prerequisite requirements.

While the Acceleradar programme began life in the US helping companies get off the ground, it now has a global reach, extending its potential impact and growing its reputation.

What’s the outcome?

As well as cementing Sportradar’s reputation within the world of sports tech and innovation, these events and procedures also help foster concrete business opportunities and lead to real job opportunities within the company and outside.

Only in March, Sportradar partnered with HYPE Sports Innovation to help provide start ups with access to data with companies such as Fanbot and Eye Candy among those to feature in the Acceleradar programme.

Innovation and Business Development Manager, Luka Pataky, says: “Innovation and sports data are such varied markets and industries that it’s important we’re active in different areas.

“The different activities and events that we supply, organise or support are all designed to increase our standing in such areas and showcase ourselves as approachable and knowledgeable to various stakeholders.”

Supporters of the next generation

What is it?

As part of our aim to inspire and assist the next generation of talent, we work alongside universities and education providers to create a constructive dialogue and partnership between business and academia.

This involves our expert speakers taking part in guest lectures, with Sportradar also assisting in university theses in a multitude of areas as well as joint projects and Innovation Challenges such as the one taking place in Vienna on Saturday 5th May and Friday, July 1st.

Who’s involved?

Sportradar has active partners including Hochschule in Bremen, the University of Vienna’s Faculty of Sport Sciences, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and the Lab for Telecommunications, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Ljubljana.

Our Innovation Challenges in Ljubljana and Vienna have also seen students from those cities participate in creating projects and products with sports data and three former winners now working for the company as a result of their involvement.

What’s the outcome?

Aside from the employment of the aforementioned Innovation Challenge winners, our work with universities helps keep Sportradar at the forefront of developing talent while acting as a business resource where required.

Malte Siegle, Head of the University and Research Programme, says: “We consider it vital that Sportradar constructs and maintains a positive dialogue between ourselves and universities, hence why we’re very proud of our existing partnership and why we’re eager to create more.

“We have the data and a lot of expertise within our team but to learn we need to stay in touch with young talent and identify areas of interest from the next generation.”

The Innovation Challenge Warm-Up event 2018 takes place on Saturday, May 5th at Vienna University.

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