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Tennis 'Innovation Challenge' Finalists To Present Aug. 28 in New York City

25 Aug, 2017


Just as the upcoming US Open Championships will showcase the best competitors in tennis, the Tennis Industry Innovation Challenge will put some of the most brilliant new and innovative sports products and services center stage for a unique competition in New York City.

The Innovation Challenge will follow the Tennis Industry Association (TIA) Tennis Forum, which starts at 8:30 a.m. ET at the Intercontinental New York Barclay Hotel on Monday, Aug. 28, which is the first day of play at the US Open.

During the Innovation Challenge competition, three finalists will present their innovative tennis product or service to a panel of judges and an audience of tennis industry leaders in a “Shark-Tank”-like competition. The winner will be announced at the end of the morning session. While the Forum and Innovation Challenge are free to attend, space is limited, so registration is required. Visit TennisIndustry.org.

The three finalists were determined by the judges from the more than 30 companies and individuals that submitted applications to be a part of the Tennis Industry Innovation Challenge. The finalists, who will each have five minutes to present, are:

* AccuTennis, of Newtown, Pa.— The interactive AccuTennis calls a match like a chair umpire, using multi-angle video clips of every shot for fast, accurate line-calling. The system also announces the score, allowing players to focus on hitting and playing. (www.accutennis.com)

* In/Out, based in Silicon Valley— This startup company offers a $200 portable electronic line-calling device using radar technologies, similar to those used in self-driving cars. The unit attaches to a net post and calls lines, offers HD video, and analyzes statistics. (www.inout.tennis)

* Playmate iGenie, based in Raleigh, N.C.— The Playmate iGenie Ball Machine has an innovative calibration and programming method that allows the user to quickly and easily create distinct ball-machine drills. Recently developed is use of an iWatch as a remote control. (www.playmatetennis.com)

The Innovation Challenge will be moderated by Carlos Salum, who is president of Salum International Resources and a member of the SportsCouncil Silicon Valley (SCSV), which is co-sponsoring the Challenge. The judges are:
* Julien Bin, CEO and co-founder of SportsCouncil Silicon Valley;
* Walid Fattah, entrepreneur and co-founder of Kourts, specializing in mobile apps and tennis management systems;
* Dr. Mark Kovacs, a performance physiologist, researcher, professor, author, speaker and coach;
* Dr. Stuart Miller, senior executive director of the International Tennis Federation;
* Royce Wolfe, principal of Thru Traffic Marketing LLC marketing development, innovation and strategy consultancy.

The new products and services in the Innovation Challenge are designed to grow the sport and business of tennis with players, consumers and fans. The finalists were chosen from the more than 30 companies and individuals who completed an online application. The winner of the Challenge will receive $1,000, a national press release to thousands of news outlets with a potential reach to millions of consumers, coverage in Tennis Industry magazine, a one-year TIA membership, and additional exposure through industry marketing and social media channels.

Following the Tennis Forum and Innovation Challenge, SCSV will present Future of Tennis & Tech sessions on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning, Aug. 28 and 29, at the InterContinental New York Barclay. Tech companies can display their products and services at a “Tech Fair” event held on Monday. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit TennisIndustry.org.

The Monday afternoon Future of Tennis & Tech session will include a panel of startup tech companies and focus on how technology can help the tennis business. As of early August, startup companies that will participate include ASAP-Sport, Bluefox, Compression Kinetics, Hexoskin, Kitman Labs, Lucid VR, Mas-Tech srl, VKTRY, VREE and Brick Simple. (Startup tech companies interested in participating should contact Julien Blin at Julien@sportscouncilsv.com.) The Monday afternoon session also will include small-group discussions in a “world café” format, moderated by Salum.

The Tuesday morning Future of Tennis & Tech session will include a sports & tech keynote speaker, Q&A discussions with tech and tennis celebrities, small-group meetings and networking. Topics will include wearable tech, virtual reality, data analytics, e-sports, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, drones and more.

For more information on the 10th Annual TIA Tennis Forum and Tennis Industry Innovation Challenge, and to register, visit TennisIndustry.org.

About the TIA: The Tennis Industry Association, the not-for-profit trade association for tennis, is THE unifying force in the tennis industry whose mission is to promote the growth and economic vitality of the business of tennis by working closely with its industry partners and in support of the USTA in their development of initiatives to increase tennis participation. Core TIA activities include producing more than 70 U.S. and global research reports annually on participation and consumer/trade research, managing the largest relational database, along with hosting annual TIA Tennis Forum, Leadership meetings and the T.O.M. Conference at major tournaments and events. Visit TennisIndustry.org or call 866-686-3036.

About SportsCouncil SV: Headquartered in the heart of the Silicon Valley, SCSV is an exclusive and global elite network of sports team executives, sports scientists, athletic trainers, team owners, VCs, large tech companies, with a decade of experience in sports, business development, fund raising, and across various leagues (NBA, NHL, NFL, MLS, European soccer, pro rugby, pro tennis), sports (soccer, hockey, basketball, American football, tennis, rugby). Visit www.sportscouncilsv.com.

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