Tuesday 23 October 2018

Statsports plays ball with Ferrell after £1bn US deal

 

Actor Will Ferrell has teamed up with basketball’s Magic Johnson to launch a soccer team to rival LA Galaxy, and has struck a lucrative deal with Newry-based software firm Statsports to provide real-time data to players and coaches at the club. Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Actor Will Ferrell has teamed up with basketball’s Magic Johnson to launch a soccer team to rival LA Galaxy, and has struck a lucrative deal with Newry-based software firm Statsports to provide real-time data to players and coaches at the club. Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Simon Rowe

The Newry-based sports analytics firm that closed a £1bn (€1.1bn) deal with US Soccer Federation this week has revealed it has also signed a deal to provide its devices to a new LA football club founded by actor Will Ferrell and sports star Magic Johnson.

Jarlath Quinn, managing director of Statsports, confirmed that LA Football Club - co-founded by Anchorman star Ferrell and basketball legend Johnson and a rival to the LA Galaxy team - has inked a lucrative deal to provide real-time data to players and coaches at the club.

Statsports, which counts Manchester United, the Triple-Crown and Grand Slam winning Irish rugby team, and half of the MSL League among its clients, has now added a touch of Hollywood glamour to its growing roster of customers.

LAFC is backed by wealthy celebrity owners, it has a new stadium, and is managed by former USA national team boss Bob Bradley.

Quinn said "it's been a good week" for his firm. The £1bn deal to provide four million registered US Soccer Federation players with Statsports performance technology is a "game-changer" for the company, he said. The LAFC deal means half of all the teams in the professional Major League Soccer in the US now use Statsports technology.

Statsports also confirmed it is about to move into the consumer market with a fitbit type device.

Having cornered the market in the elite sports sector, the company plans to roll out its Apex devices in the consumer space and is targeting a slice of the $1.6bn (€1.3bn) global consumer fitbit health and fitness wearable tracker market.

Founded in 2008 by Alan Clarke and Sean O'Connor, Statsports Group has changed the way sport is analysed, coached and viewed by combining cutting edge technology and sports science. Teams in the English Premier League, La Liga, the NFL, NBA and other professional sporting leagues and national teams use Statsports' performance trackers to gather and analyse real-time player and team data during training and games to help improve performance, strategy and reduce injuries.

"Our expectation is for millions of registered players in the US to be wearing these devices by 2022 and this will revolutionise the way young players train, recover and perform," said Quinn. "This will be the world's largest data collection programme on athletes in any sport across both professional and recreational levels. The information is so rich it enables everyone to make better decisions on training and performance." Statsports currently employs about 50 people but is looking to expand to about 300.

Sunday Indo Business

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