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THE SPOT spawns new start-up incubator, start-up champion and many great insights

PRESS RELEASE: 15 May 2018

ThinkSport’s new sport and innovation event, THE SPOT, kicked off in style today in Lausanne, Switzerland, attracting more than 700 delegates. 

The SwissTech Convention Center was transformed into an open space with a dynamic atmosphere, where participants were exposed to a wide range of engaging content and experiences all happening at the same time. The sold-out event started with the announcement of a new sport incubator for start-ups, which will further stimulate the unique sport ecosystem in Lausanne and the region.

World-class guest speakers offered great insights from different angles into a variety of topics connected to sport and innovation. They included keynote speaker Andy Walshe, Head of Sport and Human Performance at Logitech, Stéphane Guerry, President of Havas Sport & Entertainment, Joey Tan, Head of Global Strategic Initiatives at Alibaba, and Albert Mundet, Head of Knowledge Department at the innovation hub of FC Barcelona, to name just a few. 

In the Market Place, delegates discovered new solutions and products in fields like data analytics, digital broadcasting, equipment and wearables, material designs and nutrition. They also put their skills to the test piloting drones, a virtual Formula-1 car, and a bobsled. 

“What a passionate community and an exciting beginning of everything to come,” said Logitech’s Walshe. Rebecca Hopkins, CEO of the Sports Technology Awards Group, said: “THE SPOT offers great insights combined with a really exciting network of sport executives.”

During THE SPOT’s inaugural Start-Up Battle today, ForwardGame received a total of CHF 5,000 for winning the title after fending off a strong field of 40 competitors. The German company is a creator of strategy mobile games and gameplay set in the real world, whose mission is to bring the fun of playing back to streets, parks and backyards by creating a bridge between the virtual and physical worlds. Tim Friedland, CEO of ForwardGame, said the win was validation that his company was on the right track: “It tells us that what we are doing is valuable and that it is worth making sport more fun and accessible. For us, the prize is a very important approval of our work.” There were more winners on the day. Learn more here.

Networking continued after the official programme at Gotham, Lausanne’s biggest co-working space that is populated by creative minds.

Day 2 of THE SPOT will start with a presentation by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Prof. Muhammad Yunus. The Founder of the Grameen Bank will reflect on how sport can contribute to reduce poverty, unemployment and carbon emissions. Other exciting sessions will focus on innovations for athletes, safety and sports equipment; as well as on the phenomena and future of eSports.