After successfully completing two classes, the Minnesota Twins Accelerator by Techstars today announced its third cohort. Pioneering a unique pathway in the sports landscape, this accelerator is the first of its kind in Minnesota sports and just the second to be operated and funded by a Major League Baseball club.
Ten handpicked companies from across the globe will call the Twin Cities home for the duration of the program, which begins November 6th and runs through February 15th, 2024. These companies will benefit from mentorship provided by the Techstars network, the Minnesota Twins front office, the broader sports tech ecosystem and the startup community. The new class includes three international companies, three based in Minneapolis, and four others scattered across the United States.
“This year’s class continues to reflect the significant role that technology and data-driven solutions are playing in various aspects of the sports industry, including fan engagement, sustainability, sponsorship management, and performance analytics,” said Sarah Bain, Managing Director of the Minnesota Twins Accelerator by Techstars. “Our whole team is thrilled to welcome this group of entrepreneurs to Minneapolis to help them accelerate their businesses and drive exciting technologies across sports, media and entertainment. I’m personally excited to work closely with this group of founders and introduce them to Techstars and the Minnesota Twins.”
These 10 startups provide innovative solutions shaping sports tech, media, and live entertainment. Here are the companies in the 2023-24 cohort lineup:
- Camperoni (Minneapolis, MN): Camperoni automates the administrative grunt work of parenting. The platform helps parents discover kids’ camps and activities, find the ones that fit their family’s needs, share and coordinate with kids’ friends, and register easily and on time.
- Cup Carrier Media (Calgary, Canada): Cup Carrier Media provides handy advertising for better engagement. Providing 40x the engagement, Cup Carrier Media is changing sports sponsorships and out-of-home marketing with unique Portable Billboard™ drink carriers and a connected digital engagement platform.
- GUDEA (Columbia, MD): GUDEA helps companies control the public narrative. Instead of tracking what is being said, GUDEA tracks how information flows into networks and social structures that exist online. By targeting the key nodes or junctures in the information, or amplifying desired information, GUDEA provides companies the ability to control, not chase, the narrative.
- Lowr (London, United Kingdom): Lowr captures fan and employee emission data and leverages behavior change technology to help organizations achieve a reduction in their overall carbon footprint.
- PandoPartner (Toronto, Canada): PandoPartner provides simplified and modernized sponsorship management. The platform helps sports organizations centralize their sponsorship data and activities - leading to more automation and efficiency on the back end of sponsorship management.
- PromoShare (Chicago, IL): PromoShare incentivizes fan content. The software solution connects sports and events brands with local fans to promote events through organic social content. It streamlines processes onto one platform so clients can save time, grow engagement, increase fan loyalty, and boost revenue.
- Refr Sports (Minneapolis, MN): Refr Sports makes referee management simple. It provides a solution for sports organizations, referee assignors, and referees who face scheduling challenges and referee shortages. It is a streamlined platform that simplifies operations, enhances connectivity amongst users, and facilitates seamless payments.
- Reifi (Miami, FL): Reifi is reimagining sports finance. It allows pro sports teams to securitize their athletes’ contracts, helping those teams mitigate the financial risk of player underperformance. Investors in those contracts earn a return when players overperform, and teams receive a reimbursement when their players underperform.
- SportsVision (Minneapolis, MN): SportsVision turns raw video data into winning strategies. It is an easy-to-use AI platform that takes videos from a mobile phone, a basic camera, or even existing archives and transforms them into real-time, sports science-level insights. No fancy gear, no tedious setups. They provide straightforward insights to elevate every athlete’s game.
- The Playbook (Atlanta, GA): The Playbook helps athletes practice better. It is an award-winning, trademarked approach to track, treat, and improve overall well-being and performance for athletes and individuals who are operating at the highest level. The team has developed a system proven across thousands of athletes, coaches and support staff, and are building it for scale.
“We’re excited to welcome these inspirational founders to Minneapolis for the third cohort of the Minnesota Twins Accelerator by Techstars,” said Chris Iles, Senior Director of Innovation and Growth for the Minnesota Twins. “Each of these companies has the potential to positively disrupt the sports, entertainment and tech industries, and we look forward to working with them to provide an unfair advantage as they grow their businesses.”
The Minnesota Twins Accelerator by Techstars is headquartered in the historic Ford Center, which is a landmark of innovation and is located steps from Target Field in the heart of Minneapolis’ North Loop. In addition to Techstars’ industry-leading mentors and resources, the 10 startups will have the opportunity to learn from Twins mentors, including members of the club’s senior leadership, and business and baseball operations teams.