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22 February 2024

Britain’s in the race: Two British companies join the 2024 Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator

Today, 10 companies were accepted into the fourth class of the Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator, two of which are British.

Sports have always been a source of fascination for humans.

Our admiration for sports can be traced back to Antiquity, with the importance of sports for the Ancient Greeks. In 776 BC, exactly 2800 years before this year’s games in Paris, the Olympics were created and held every four years, at the sanctuary of Zeus.

It is no accident that the Ancient Greeks chose this sanctuary. If Prometheus gave fire to mankind, the Olympic flame comes from within ourselves.

Our desire to be better, to go beyond what’s possible, to redefine the limits of mankind’s body and psyche, could not be more specific to Homo Sapiens. By this demonstration of force, the Ancient Greeks showed the gods that us, primates, have the power to climb Mount Olympus and challenge these deities.

Today, the gods of Olympus are ancient history but the fire of passion for sports is still burning strong in the heart of man.

From the court of the Chinese dynasties to the Roman Colosseum, by way of the Scottish Highlands and their caber throwers, athletics have been, are, and always will be running strong all around the world.

But after perfecting the technique, technology seems like the next logical step that will propel and allow us to shift into high gear.

The 10 companies accepted into the fourth class of the Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech,  Accelerator are on a mission to reinvent, improve and revolutionise sportstech. Amongst these 10 companies, two of them, Dizplai and KYMIRA, come from the land where all sports were born: the United Kingdom.

Best Programme for Best Startups

Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator, powered by Boomtown, is an immersive six-month programme that will start in March.

Aquimo Inc, Fobi AI, Mantis-AI, Mobii Systems, StellarAlgo, Plantiga, ZATAP, and Zoomph, Inc., are 8 of the 10 startups picked over 3 continents, in order to revolutionise sportstech.

Not to be outdone, Britain is proudly represented by its two champions: Dizplai and KYMIRA.

Based in Manchester, Dizplai enables real-time audience engagement for live news, sports, and entertainment, turning broadcasts into immersive two-way experiences by seamlessly integrating with social media, messaging apps, user-generated content, and sports data with dynamic graphics.

On the other hand KYMIRA, the Reading-based business, creates products with infrared and sensor tech that enhance performance and recovery, address chronic illness, mitigate against injury risk, improve sleep, and provide never-before-seen data insights for men and women.

“KYMIRA’s technology is really impressive. KYMIRA has woven infrared technology into the fabric of the garments themselves. This technology harvests energy to help with recovery, enhance performance, improve sleep. It is a very advanced product.” says Jenna Kurath, Vice President, Startup Partnerships and Head of Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech.

An Exciting Schedule

The exciting opportunities and impactful outcomes of the SportsTech programme have continued to fuel interest and demand with more than 1,500 applicants for this year’s class, from across 52 countries. The 10 companies selected will have a chance to engage with some of the top sports and tech brands from around the world. This includes: the Premier League, who just joined the SportsTech partner consortium last summer, along with NBC Sports, NBC Sports Next, Sky Sports, Comcast Spectacor, Golf, NASCAR, and PGA TOUR; and three US Olympic sports organisations: U.S. Ski & Snowboard, USA Swimming, and USA Cycling. Since the first class in 2021, SportsTech alumni have achieved 132 pilots, partnerships, and commercial deals with consortium partners.

This unique access to decision-makers at leading sports brands and organisations across Comcast will provide valuable insights on enhancing their products and services and prepare for accelerated commercial success through strategic collaborations with programme partners and within the broader sports industry.

SportsTech participants will also benefit from a series of unique excursions and working retreats structured around partner events that will bring founders behind-the-scenes to give them a better understanding of the organisations’ operational needs.

“The SportsTech programme focuses not only on tackling complex business challenges for a vast cross-section of some of the world’s most recognised sports brands, but it additionally prepares founders to build sustainable businesses.” adds Jennah.

Entrepreneurs will work one-on-one with SportsTech advisors and participate in customised programming focused on refining go-to-market strategy, commercial business alignment, and adaptive business modelling, with an emphasis on direct business outcomes for enterprise-ready scale.

Mentors & Partners

The 2024 programme will begin on March 4 in Florida with a roadshow of partner events and immersion experiences designed to deepen customer discovery—taking founders behind-the-scenes at Universal Studios Florida and NASCAR’s Daytona International Speedway and showcasing how PGA TOUR and NBC Sports’ Golf produce professional sporting events, like the Arnold Palmer Invitational—allowing founders to identify how to align their technology solutions to the business and operational needs of partners.

Mentors will include industry leaders from Comcast NBCUniversal as well as strategic advisors from the Boomtown network and the partner consortium, including: Will McIntosh, President, NBC Sports NEXT and Fandango; Lora Dennis, Executive Vice President, NBCUniversal Local; Jim Denney, Chief Product Officer, Peacock; Alexandra Willis, Director of Digital Media and Audience Development, the Premier League; Wyatt Hicks, NASCAR Digital Vice President; and Scott Gutterman, Senior Vice President, Digital Operations, PGA TOUR, among others.

The capstone of the programme will take place at Rally Innovation in Indianapolis on August 27-28, 2024, where this year’s founders will showcase their tech innovations, putting a spotlight on their scale-up traction during the programme to garner new business opportunities across the broader sports industry.

Interested in applying to join the next Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Class of 2025?