Iker Casillas: «My experience and predictions in sportstech»
¡Cómo están los máquinas! I leave you now with a small reflection on the current situation and what I have experienced in these 4 years of immersion in the world of entrepreneurship, mainly through sports.
Sportstech, in general terms, continues to have a very positive trend based on performance overviews since 2018. There has been a considerable increase in both the number of projects launched each year and the investment volume they attract. North America maintains global dominance in investment levels, followed by Asia and Europe. It is very interesting to see how the trend is that there are increasingly more and more investment vehicles and funds specialized in sportstech with a «hunger» to be able to invest in this type of project, and that is what encourages us to continue betting from SportBoost for this vertical.
Speaking of trends, there are two clear targets that take the lead in terms of levels of investment and interest. On the one hand, all those solutions associated with the improvement of 47% of worldwide investments are linked to this type of solution. And on the other hand, everything that affects the care and improvement of the performance of athletes is also involved in an upward trend. Bringing together athletes is also involved in an upward trend, accounting for 17% worldwide.
Impact on sport
Taking two of the major trends I explained earlier, thanks to new technologies, the impact that technology is having on the world of sport and what surrounds it is huge. From the fan’s point of view, the improvement of experiences, both in the stadium and at home, is brutal. Best of all is that it’s only just begun. We have already seen examples of how major sports leagues, such as LaLiga, are managing to capture the attention of fans for longer, providing them with content that is much more in tune and in line with their tastes in a personalized way, creating new formulas for monetization and virtual communities where they can share tastes and interests.
On the sportsperson’s side, and here I feel very identified, it has been possible to considerably increase our years of sporting life as well as the quality of our performance. I was unlucky enough to suffer that heart attack that retired me earlier than expected. I would have given anything to have known about the IDOVEN startup earlier and to have been able to prevent my illness in time. It is this technology that I am talking about, not only in the field of sport but also outside of it, that makes it possible to be outside of sport, which helps me to be in the best physical, mental, cognitive, and health conditions. The same with the information extracted from the game, to bring more technical-tactical knowledge to the player or coach, as well as to improve training and, as I said, to prevent injuries. This is where I believe there is currently the most room for improvement in professional sports.
Experience at SportBoost
Being involved in the day-to-day work of SportBoost allows me to get to know more closely a greater number of verticals and projects, to learn about new technologies, and apply them to sport. A recent example is the capabilities and evolution that the world of blockchain and Web 3.0 are experiencing. I can bring my experience and knowledge in the field of high-performance sports to support the team in the scouting process where I have the possibility to test directly, or together with other colleagues, different software and hardware presented to me by the team to have a better opinion of the client. On the other hand, I like to contribute value from my networking network to support the portfolio management of startups linked to SportBoost.
I must admit that I feel very comfortable making decisions. I have been lucky enough to do it since I was very young, defending the goals of clubs I have played for and of the Spanish national football team. For me, it’s a similar role in a totally different project. But this is something I would like to emphasize: sometimes we sportsmen and women don’t realize how much value we can bring to the business world. That is why, together with LaLiga, through the P.E.O. program, we are trying to link the entrepreneurial ecosystem with the sportsmen and sportswomen at a national level.
Here are my reflections so far on this beautiful journey that my team and I believe we will face in the years to come.
A big hug young people!
AUTHOR: IKER CASILLAS
Iker Casillas currently holds the position of Deputy Director of the Real Madrid Foundation. He also presides over his own foundation that collaborates with various social causes. He is an icon of LaLiga. His business activities are developed in different areas. He is the founder of SportBoost, an accelerator in the world of sports. The Iker Casillas Academies have their own methodology for goalkeeper training. He is the president of the 1K club that participates in the Kings League. Additionally, he participates in campaigns for his different sponsors.