INTERNATIONAL SPORTS GROUNDBREAKERS CHALLENGE CONTRIBUTE TO THE SPORTS INDUSTRY AND BE PART
OF THE LARGEST START-UP CHALLENGE IN APAC

APPLICATIONS OPEN UNTIL

THE CHALLENGE

The Global Sport Innovation Center (GSIC) and Sport Singapore (SportSG) are launching one of the largest open innovation projects ever!
It aims to address the main sports tech challenges international sports organizations have.
 
You can offer one or more solutions to the 35 problem statements related to football, cricket, cycling, MMA, table tennis, triathlon, swimming, bowling and others.
 
Are you ready to break the ground?

THE PROCESS

We want you to address the problem statements of the sports entities involved in the project
Here’s how it will be done:

Aplications Open Winners announcement April 21st, 2023 Submit your application Opportunity to access the benefits of the Microsoft
for Startups program.

A prize money of SGD$15,000 sponsored by SportSG
for each winning participant (up to 10 participants in total), for companies incorporated in Singapore or planning to open an office in Singapore within 3
months of the announcement of winners

Possibility to showcase the solution in the GSIC experience center in Singapore and Madrid.
Up to 3 submissions for 3 problem statements you can solve Nov 10th, 2022 The opportunity to implement a pilot project at a sports events and/or facilities supported by the problem statement owners who are part of this Challenge.

Opportunity to be part of the PR and marketing materials to promote their solution.

Mentoring program from experts and executives of the sport-tech industry from the GSIC network.
January 21st, 2023 What will you get? Phase 1 applications close

PROBLEM STATEMENTS

Code: PS1

Sport: Cycling

Problem Statement: Singapore’s land constraints means that there are limited roads and locations for cyclists to enjoy rides.  

Riding on roads in Singapore is also extremely dangerous, as there is a lack of bike paths, roads are not designed for cycling, and a general peripheral vision of car drivers and their lack of judging speed.

How can cyclists in Singapore ride safely and enjoy themselves, while taking into consideration space constraints and without compromising the experience?

Code: PS2

Sport: Bowling

Problem Statement: Many bowlers still have to record their scores on a piece of paper and calculate their final scores manually. As a result, much paper waste are generated especially at bowling events.

How can we reduce paper waste at bowling events, while allowing for the tracking of scores digitally?

Code: PS3

Sport: Cricket

Problem Statement: We are living increasingly digital lives, with more competition for our limited free time.

In a world of short attention span and unprecedented battle for attention, it is critical to provide a comprehensive engagement offering.

How do we combine digital and physical experiences to create compelling fan experiences and increase fan participation/engagement?

Code: PS4

Sport: Cricket

Problem Statement:

The landscape for sports has changed. Viewers have shorter attention spans, and they now prefer to watch games on-demand.

As a result, how do we diversify the target audience, produce new content, and create new revenue streams to attract further investments into cricket, so as to grow the sport for future generations?

Code: PS5

Sport: Cricket

Problem Statement:

Cricket is a sport for all and serves to bring communities together.

Research shows 80% of cricket fans have played the game in a structured format before they became adults, and kids that have played for three or more years are the most engaged fans! Because cricket is a complex game, exposing kids to the game at an early age provides a critical pathway to develop future elite talents and to grow a youthful fan base.

As a result, how do we accelerate that aspiration to attract new kids (5-12) from all backgrounds to participate in the sport? How do we also continue to grow the game for women and girls, so that the sport is more inclusive?

Code: PS6

Sport: Cricket

Problem Statement:

Cricket creates a stage for inspirational stories and people. The heroes on the field and behind the scenes are motivators for others two join and tell the story of our values. Getting this right, and broadening the awareness helps drive interest and participation, and present the sport appropriately.

How do we surface and tell these stories better in a scalable way?

Recurso 42@2x

Code: PS7

Sport: Cross-sport

Problem Statement:

As Singapore does not have a mid-sized, multi-purpose stadium that can hold different types of events for up to 20,000 spectators, this could potentially limit the types of events that could be held in Singapore and/or hinder the provision of an intimate fan experience for the spectators.

Building a permanent venue that could potentially be underutilised is expensive. In addition, temporary event overlays for a one-off event will not be cost-effective or environmentally sustainable in the long-term.

How can we leverage the Singapore National Stadium or other large venue(s) and reduce their capacity such that we can diversify our event offerings and without compromsing on the intimate fan experience?

Recurso 42@2x

Code: PS8

Sport: Cross-sport

Problem Statement:

Sport events such as marathons often generate paper waste which comes from marketing materials as well as number tags for participants. High costs related to adoption, inventory, transportation, and maintenance could prevent event organisers from utilising technology (e.g. RFID technology) to easily identify/differentiate participants during the event (instead of using obvious visual cue in the form of number tags).

How can we easily and cost-effectively identify/differentiate runners and track their starting/finishing times, while being environmentally conscious?

Recurso 42@2x

Code: PS9

Sport: Cross-sport

Problem Statement:

The measurements and readings of water quality using sensors and instruments (pH and chlorine) often differs at the FOP of the swimming pool and at the pump room. This difference is due to external contaminats from the environment (e.g. increased bather load, rainfall, exposure to UV deterioriation).

Deviations that exceed the legislated parameters pose public health/hygiene risks. For example, an overdosage of chlorine would cause irritation to the eyes and burns to the skin/eyes/other sensitive areas. As a result, it is critical and vital to accurately monitor and administer the dosing regime. An accurate dosage will also reduce potential wastage.

Given the context, how can we cost-effectively, accurately, and digitally capture such readings at the FOP of the swimming pool? This can also be combined with an early warning system and/or a fail-safe mechanism that is triggered if sensors and instruments are off-calibration.

Recurso 42@2x

Code: PS10

Sport: Cross-sport

Problem Statement:

Currently, Active Health Labs island-wide in Singapore is staffed by Active Health Coaches who help individuals with their health and wellness journey.

How can we scale our capabilities and capacities, so as to empower individuals to measure their own status of fitness, health, posture, and/or movement and performance quality independently?

The solution can potentially be in the form of self-servicing kiosks, and provide teleconferencing capabilities to speak to a coach for consultation or to book a follow-up programme with Active Health Lab.

Recurso 42@2x

Code: PS11

Sport: Cross-sport

Problem Statement:

ActiveSG Circle serves to be an ecosystem connecting consumers (demand) with the sport industry (supply) and acts as a digital complement to our physical sport centres.

Consumers may be hampered by inertia, lacking of playing opportunities, time and space to participate in sport.

Can technology help

  • by automating matching of players of same ability to play in a tennis,
  • by enabling interest groups to organise recreational sport leagues or events by easing the process of recruiting players and booking facilities,
  • by allowing recreational tournament organisers to track key stats such as goal scorers, expected goals or assists, etc to easily identify best recreational sport athletes for talent acquisition
  • by allowing the unmanned video recording of such recreational tournaments for later sport analytics or using AI to create match highlights
  • by enabling sport fans to sponsor for the production of the videos, photos or content they love
  • by encouraging people to check in their favourite running or cycling routes
  • by bringing people into a metaverse where players from their own remote locations can play real time in a 3×3 basketball match for example?

How can ActiveSG Circle become a truly self-sustaining nexus where consumers can easily find opportunities to play either physically or virtually? How can industry players or content creators monetise their offerings?

Code: PS12

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

Lots of people are in and around the stadium venue hours before an event, and they would like to find the shortest line to buy food and beverages as well as merchandise, and also the shortest and best way to enter the stadium. Hence, there is a need as a stadium operator to improve crowd flow and reduce long lines to increase F&B revenue, as well as to manage engagement with our services.

It is also important for a stadium operator to know precisely where all our staff, particularly security staff, are in real-time, so that we can activate them onsite if there is an unexpected situation that needs to be managed.

Given the context, how do we improve stadium operations and enhance the fan experience before, during, after events? The solution can ideally have a precision of less than 1 metre and a latency of less than 2 seconds.

Code: PS13

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

Currently, we do not have non-invasive ways to capture additional vital signs of a football player to help us build a more complete player profile for analysis. It will be helpful to have this additional layer of data to help analyse a player’s performance.

How can we measure/detect their vital signs (particularly the human respiratory and heartbeat signals) via remote monitoring, during training, and in matches when they are competing?

Code: PS14

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

Fans, especially the younger ones, now have higher expectations when they watch a football game. For example, they want to see digital content as well as Team/Player statistics.

How can we improve fan engagement through technologies that allow fans to access new content, data/statistics in real time, or other enhanced content related to the game?

Code: PS15

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

It is sometimes tricky to adapt digital transformation to the physical world, but there is a great potential to leverage digitalisation to create fan experiences.

How can we combine the physical and digital world within the venue in an innovative way, creating attractive and immersive experiences together with new business models?

Code: PS16

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

The atmosphere in the venues sometimes is highly dependent on the number of participants.

How can we leverage technologies and innovations so that we can still create an entertaining and motivating environment for fans as well as to monetise the venue, even if it is not full?

Code: PS17

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

The players of our social schools are people at risk of social exclusion and with few resources to access a decent job. In addition, we also have players with intellectual disabilities whose access to the labour market is also challenging.

How can we help them to generate a quality CV, improve their access to job offers, as well as to help them develop their interview skills? The solution can also potentially bring together companies looking for workers who are relatively less skillful.

Code: PS18

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

Currently, there is a general lack of awareness for recycling and how important proper recylcing of items is in helping to protect the planet.

How can we gamify learning about recycling so as to raise awareness of its importance, especially amongst young fans? The solution could potentially be in the form of a metaverse, where the scenarios change accordingly on the options selected. It can also entice players with prizes and rewards for participating in the game.

Code: PS19

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

As part of their sustainability drive, a football club wants to fully understand their carbon footprint. They have a strong commitment to cut the CO2 emissions and reduce the carbon footprint by 2030 in the following set of areas across the whole operation: gas & electricity, water, fuel, staff, team and fan travels, procurement, and waste.

How might we get a full understanding of their carbon footprint across the whole team and stadium operations?

Code: PS20

Sport: Football

Problem Statement:

The future European legislation will completely ban the use of chemical pesticides in green areas, including natural grass sports surfaces. Therefore, meeting the required quality standards for professional football, will be nearly impossible in some areas of Spain due to the current turf diseases and the lack of alternative treatments.

How might we tackle this challenge responsibly to meet the legislation requirements and still operate to a high quality standard?

Code: PS21

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

Just like any other sport, statistics become quite important from a perspective of story telling as well as making the sport more engaging. There are great solutions that exist to capture statistics in sports like Soccer where you can see formations, the way a ball is passed, distance travelled in passes, possession time etc. In martial arts, it becomes quite challenging since the athletes are sometimes quite close / in a grapple / on the ground. Beyond this, it is also quite subjective in terms of what is a significant hit or not and how much material impact it has.

How can we automate and/or simply the process of collection of statistics?

Code: PS22

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

As with any televised / “live” event, there is traditionally a schedule that needs to be adhered to based on the time slot of the broadcast partner in multiple countries.

There are matchups created keeping in mind a wide range of parameters including card cost, representation of different countries, story telling (tournament structures), trying to create the most exciting match ups etc. However, a lot of this is in flux till the last minute because for a variety of reasons, the overall card might not turn out the way it is anticipated.

The Athlete could fail their hydration test, they could miss weight or they could fall ill. This could be anywhere from 1 month before an event to 1 hour before the bout. This has a huge impact considering there are fixed slots to fill with impactful content and at the same time, it may not be cost effective to be spending huge amounts to have a ton of back-ups.

How can we mitigate part of the flux that is created at the last minute?

Code: PS23

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

For a sports media property, a large portion of engagement as well as monetization happens via 3rd party platforms.

This includes content and social platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok etc. as well as with traditional broadcast and OTT partners. There is no direct relationship that is forged with the fan, and this makes it difficult to kickstart DTC businesses / initiatives like ticketing, merchandising, NFTs, PPV, gaming etc. Without this direct fan engagement and not all 3rd party platforms helping to move the needle, you basically have to start from scratch each time you launch a DTC business or initiative. At the same time, content and social platforms also drive substantial value since the reach and network effect really starts from there and the fan already sits there.

How do we drive our fans who are engaging with us on broadcast & social platforms to our own operated properties without harming engagement and monetization?

Code: PS24

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is one of the leading forms of self-defence in the world today. It is a sport that always requires 2 persons to practice. Currently there are grappling dummies available for individuals to use when they train alone but these have zero interactivity and engagement while training. They are also extremely heavy and not viable for many smaller size individuals to properly use.

How can we let practitioners know when they are applying techniques correctly? How can we also provide practitioners other information such as pressure applied while using those techniques? The solution should be durable, yet made of a lightweight material.

Code: PS25

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

Muay Thai punch/ kick pads and boxing mitts are integral in Muay Thai and boxing training. Practitioners hit these pads/ mits while practising these martial arts to improve their power and accuracy. While still useful and a key element in training for striking martial arts, there is no way to quantify an athlete’s improvement in power, speed and accuracy.

How can these pads and boxing mitts detect and measure the power and accuracy of an athlete during training, with the help of an app?

If this solution works out for Muay Thai and boxing, it could potenially be used for every striking martial arts such as Taekwondo, karate, sambo, etc. which utilise pads in training.

Code: PS26

Sport: MMA

Problem Statement:

When MMA, Muay Thai and boxing athletes compete, they always do so in either a cage or a ring. Knowing your boundaries in the ring/ cage is very important in one’s game plan and can either be an advantage or be detrimental. Despite the necessity of training in a cage or a ring, many gyms do not have either one due to the high cost and the space required to have them installed. This is an obstacle for many athletes training for their fights.

How can we recreate the boundaries that are usually defined by a physical ring or cage?

The solution needs to be easily set-up and taken down, and all components need to be compact and easily transported to and from different locations. Ideally, it should be a low cost solution to allow any gyms or athletes to be able to purchase it.

Code: PS27

Sport: Swimming

Problem Statement:

Fans currently only get to watch aquatics competitions without any means of engagment with the sport, in the stadium or with the athletes.

How can we better engage fans during an aquatics competition?

Code: PS29

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement:

The table is the most iconic part of Table Tennis. However, it remains the only aspect that has not seen innovations.
How can we innovate the table top such that it remains “normal” or “black” during play, but can be used as part of the show presentation in between points and games and engage fans in meaningful ways? Players will need to feel that they are competing just like they are on a regular table with tip-top playing conditions.

Code: PS29

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement:

Currently, stickers are placed on the table tennis floor to show sponsorship logos.

How can we innovate the floor surface such that it can be lit up as part of the show, possess the same characteristics as a normal floor, is safe for player to play on, and does not affect the quality of play? This can provide an opportunity for deeper sponsorship activation and show presentation.

Code: PS30

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement: All international sporting events result in a high carbon footprint due to flights, electricity, car transport, plastic consumption and more.
How can event organisers reduce their events’ carbon footprint? Are there innovative ways to do so?

Code: PS31

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement:

Pong for Table Tennis was the one of the earliest e-sports games in the world (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pong). To continue this legacy, we will need to provide as much gamification as possible in the broadcast and TV production, such that it will eventually be turned into a virtual reality esports game.

How can we create a virtual reality environment to better explain the match and bring TV viewers closer to the action? This will give pundits and commentators a much richer product to be able to explain Table Tennis to a wider audience.

Code: PS32

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement:

Table tennis is a very technical and tactical sport with many subset stories of every match between different styles of players.

Currently Table Tennis experts understand the different tactics between different players, but the casual fan or new fan does not understand the different idiosyncrasies that goes into being a Table Tennis champion.

How can we track the motion and locations of balls in each rally and display this in an attractive way on television, websites or mobile applications, so that it is easier for fans to understand the match?

Code: PS33

Sport: Table Tennis

Problem Statement: Table Tennis is such an athletic and tough sport and it is very difficult to become a professional player. The fact that so many people play Table Tennis as a hobby around the world, compared to professional players means that it is tough for people to understand the fundamental difference between pro Table Tennis and hobby Table Tennis.
There is currently no way to show the power and speed of the athletes to tell their amazing sport and how they fundamental lay differ from hobby players.
How can we show the true story of an athlete through television broadcast and on digital/social media?

Code: PS34

Sport: Triathlon

Problem Statement:

Currently, we are dependent on digital platforms like Facebook, etc. to recruit and communicate with the local audience. This is expensive and not an optimal way of engagement.

How can we incentivise the local audience to support event communication, education, and promotion (possibly through Web3 technology or local platform/network)?

Code: PS35

Sport: Triathlon

Problem Statement: 

Spectators in and around the event venue want to have easy access to information such as schedule, participants, venue map, etc.
How can we provide spectators with easy access to information in a green/sustainable way (i.e. not a brochure or pamphlet)? This can potentially be used for all events in Singapore.

See the complete list of problem statements

THE PARTICIPATION

If you are a sports entity with a problem statement, you can share it with us and we’ll include it to the list. 

If you’re a company with solutions to one or more problem statements, you can submit your proposal.

 

MORE INFORMATION

For more information about the challenge, participation requirements, selection criteria and process,

check out the Basis of Participation in the project, and Frequently Asked Questions.

SPORTS ENTITIES Involved

GSIC

Global Sports Innovation Center powered by Microsoft (GSIC) is a business cluster powered by Microsoft Sport Team that gathers all kind of sports entities (clubs, federation, associations), institutions, tech-companies (from start-ups to enterprises), research organizations, investors and key figures of sport industry to improve its value chain. To do so we focus our activities and services on 6 main points: entrepreneurship, networking, applied research, showcase, Microsoft Partners Solutions and digital transformation advisory services. With headquarters based in Madrid and Singapore, GSIC now has members in 45 countries around the world.

sPORT singapore

Sport Singapore is the national agency for the promotion and development of sport in Singapore. As part of its efforts, Sport Singapore seeks to establish partnerships and platforms to establish

a marketplace to nurture innovation and incubate ideas and enable sport business development through cross-sector collaborations which drive innovation and business. 

 

Sport Singapore will host +15 events in Singapore in the next few months and it’s looking for the best partners to implement pilot projects at these events.

Any question?

 

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