Chelsea FC hosts Loughborough University London Sport Tech Accelerator

Last month, Stamford Bridge (home to Chelsea FC) hosted Loughborough University London’s SPIN Accelerator final pitch competition to round off the recent sports tech accelerator programme.

Eight companies from the programme pitched in front of an audience of leaders and innovators from the business of sport.  This included investors, globally recognised brands, governing bodies and topflight clubs and associations.  Representatives from FC Barcelona, Boston Red Sox, Golden State Warriors, Arsenal FC, the MLS, IPL, BBC Sport, PwC and KPMG were part of expert panels throughout the day, with the pitches closing the day’s celebration of innovation in sport.

The final pitch was won by the SPIN Accelerator’s Heavy Kinematic Machines who use high tech sensors in their SOLO product to turn regular gyms smart and connect a suite of apps to give a 360-degree view on the user’s health and fitness. The pitch event opened up a global network of further opportunities for Heavy Kinematic Machines as well as the other start-ups involved.

Rafał Kasperowicz Founder & CEO at Heavy Kinematic Machines said “We joined the SPIN Accelerator to get opportunities to connect our company’s tech to the business of sport.  We’ve seen huge progress through the programme and would encourage anyone looking to scale to connect with what Loughborough is doing.”

The SPIN Accelerator is a 12-week scale-up programme for small to medium sized business with an innovation in the sports industry.  Hosted by Loughborough University London, the global programme unites the University’s sporting, technological and entrepreneurial expertise across its two campuses in London and Loughborough.

Over the last 12 weeks as part of the SPIN Accelerator programme academic colleagues from the Institute for Sport Business, the Institute for Design Innovation, the School of Business and Economics, Wolfson (School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering) and the School of Sport Exercise and Health Sciences have given masterclasses and webinars to help the companies unlock the potential to scale.

The programme also utilises Loughborough University London’s contacts and connections in the world of sport and scale up.  Companies on the programme have been connected to investors, governing bodies, sporting brands and teams that form part of the London campus network.  Companies on the programme have also been able to participate in Loughborough University London’s Collaborate activities that offer group and student projects to solve business challenges in the curriculum.

Professor James Skinner, Director for Loughborough University London’s Institute for Sport Business said “Programmes like our SPIN Accelerator are a great way for us to deliver impact in the real world. Supporting start-up companies to access our expertise and network in this way leads to real results, enriches our curriculum and supports our students and graduates.”

The activity forms part of Loughborough University London’s acceleration pathway for innovation in sport.  This programme includes student and graduate competitions, a six-week pre-acceleration programme, a three-month sport tech start-up programme and the SPIN accelerator.  Applications will open again for the next cohort later in the year.

For more information on the accelorator programmes please contact Ben Cole.

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2019 QS World University Rankings, University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2019 and top in the country for its student experience in the 2018 THE Student Experience Survey.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2020, 5th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019 and 8th in The UK Complete University Guide 2020.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Specialising exclusively in postgraduate-level study, Loughborough University London is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers cutting-edge master’s and PhD degrees, as well as business collaboration, research and enterprise opportunities.

The seven specialist institutes at Loughborough University London include: Design Innovation, Digital Technologies, Diplomacy and International Governance, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, International Management, Media and Creative Industries, and Sport Business. Close industry partnerships with a wealth of leading businesses and creative organisations means teaching and learning is informed by real-life challenges and driven by true industry pressures.