Fuel To Rise Dietary Platform For Athletes By Rise Nutrition Seeks Investors

Data-Driven Nutrition For Peak Performance



Athletes meet Rise Nutrition and their newly launched Fuel To Rise platform. The sports technology company with a social justice mission, developed a solution pre-pandemic that uses analytics to optimize each person or teams’ nutrition, then calculates and delivers precise, customized solutions per athlete. The tech began as coding designed as a tool that can save registered dieticians 400 hours or more a year with screening then activating each college or professional athlete user. The company headquarters is based in Boston and counts 3,000 users already with plans to work with additional collegiate and pro teams. Fuel to Rise meets the NCAA mandate requirement for nutrition education. Among current users are ten entire NCAA athletic programs, programs in the Big Ten, Major League Baseball clubs, and teams in the East Coast Hockey League, each using the platform with the nutritional goal to reach optimized performance. The Sports Techie community blog chatted via Zoom with Rise Nutrition’s two women co-founders and sisters – Jesse Papirio (she was in San Salvador on business) and Kristan Papirio (in Boston and recently in Edinburgh), about their startup journey, the post-pandemic launch of the Fuel to Rise app late last year, and next steps such as soliciting angel investors, staff increase in sales and marketing, increasing customer acquisition, and new product enhancements. Product feedback is provided by Kara Lynch, sports dietitian for athletes across the Minnesota Twins organization.

After a successful launch, Rise Nutrition pursues angel investors 
to take the platform to the next level

Data-Driven Nutrition For Peak Performance

The software product is complete with a comprehensive nutrition requirement database curated by registered dietitians for the more than 3,000 users to date. Cost is an annual subscription fee tiered for amount of users per client.

“Fuel to Rise provides real-time nutrition status and performance metrics to help athletes determine meaningful steps to performance improvement,” said Jesse Papirio. “Rise Nutrition has tapped into a big market opportunity, and after achieving a 60 percent increase in revenue year-over-year, we are ready to take our platform to the next level. We’re excited to seek angel investors to support the rapid expansion of our team, increase customer acquisition, and invest in our product to make it a must-have tool across college and professional sports.”

Sport and position-specific fueling for optimized performance

Sport and position-specific fueling for optimized performance

Nutrition optimization is crucial to peak performance, as teams also take on the responsibility for the well-being of their athletes. A 2020 study by The Sport Journal estimates that “20-25 percent of collegiate athletes engage in maladaptive eating and weight control behaviors, such as binge eating, excessive exercise, strict dieting, fasting, self-induced vomiting, and the use of weight loss supplements.” Fuel to Rise enables team dietitians and support staff to quickly and effectively screen every athlete in 10-15 minutes for eating disorders, and tailor sustainable behavior change to sport, position, and individual biometric analytics. This proprietary tool automates screening and onboarding tasks allowing registered dietitians working with college or professional athletes, more time to work with individuals and provide personalized support.

“Nutrition is one piece of the puzzle when it comes to an athlete’s training program and with the right tools, assessment, and plan of action nutrition can provide a critical component to keeping athletes on the field,” said Lynch, a MLB sports dietitian. “Fuel to Rise provides me with insightful data to strategically upgrade an athlete’s individualized nutrition plan, in real time, while I am completing a nutrition consult.”

After a successful launch, Rise Nutrition pursues angel investors 
to take the platform to the next level

Winning Starts With Us

Leveraging rigorous protocols and innovative technologies, their proprietary platform, Fuel to Rise™, provides usable approaches to identify nutrition deficiencies and find appropriate solutions for college and professional athletes to maximize their potential. The platform gives players a highly-personalized tool to help them reach performance goals, and it automates some of the labor-intensive tasks of team dietitians to enable them to spend more time one-on-one with athletes.

In the same way, they optimize performance for elite athletes, their core technology is being applied to address malnutrition in food insecure communities around the world. A portion of the sales of Fuel to Rise software licenses go to fund Rise Nutrition’s social justice mission. For more information about the impact projects check out Seeds to Rise™ – https://risenutrition.org/impact/.

After the Fuel to Rise launch, Rise Nutrition is now attempting to raise capital via angel investors to scale the nutrition platform to the next level. The Massachusetts company is seeking to build out its workforce, increase customer acquisition, and continue upgrading and refining the Fuel to Rise product.

Growing Pains

Rise Nutrition finds that the sales cycle can be slow as they seek new users, and user adoption can take time with professional sports teams because of old school mentalities and red flags they encounter when trying to open the sales door then closes deals. I asked what dieticians say when first confronted with the Fuel to Rise app. They both said simultaneously, “Where has this technology been?”

I absolutely get their pain and remember my days as the Director of Sales and Marketing for Sports 2000 in 1995-1997, selling the GridIron 2000 expert game planning solution, co-developed by the Seattle Seahawks that ran on Windows 95 at a time when most of the NFL and college football programs operated with Mac technology because of the educational ties teams and programs had to MacIntosh. It is not easy to get early adaptors in pro and college sports but Rise Nutrition has already done so and eagerly wants more user adoption.

They do have competition in the sports space however the others focus on meal plans, and not have a comprehensive database approach.

I asked the kind sisters whether they had any big-name athlete endorsements and at the moment, they do not. There are several professional athletes on the Board of Advisors. I wondered aloud if they would be interested in working together with Caitlan Clark, the Iowa Hawkeyes superstar women’s basketball player that is now the new, all-time NCAA scoring leader for women. They both chuckled and said,” yes,” and asked if I had any contacts to her. My response was that you never know who will read this blog and pass on the good word to Clark about future endorsement and influencer activations. Asking Clark to invest her NIL money in Rise Nutrition in exchange for equity and marketing services as Ready Nutrition did with notable athletes like Aaron Donald, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jessica Pegula, is doable.

I brought up LeBron James who spends over a million dollars per year on training, wellness, longevity, and diet, complete with a personal chef. The reason I did so was because I pivoted to the new NCAA NIL landscape and wondered whether Rise Nutrition had thought about targeting individual NCCA athletes as clients since many now earn 6-figures, and some, 7-figures, in NIL revenue and are easily able to afford an individual Fuel to Rise subscription and also hiring a registered dietitian. They said there have been internal discusses around this topic, as well as the new goal to target players associations, and athlete agencies and agents, that can each provide Rise Nutrition’s nutritional software services to their membership and portfolio of players, respectively.

I usually ask or make a comment no one else has in these chats and did so once again. The Meal Information section of the app features enough room to add all the nutrition/foods an athlete eats in up to 7 meals a day. I said that reminded me of a Hobbits’ meal plan from the Lord Of The Rings. Since the sisters were both fans of the books and movies they truly got my perspective and the intention of the comment.

The company has seen sales traction in women sports that are technology forward such as the WNBA, NWSL and PWHL, as visibility increases. Esports is another industry ripe for nutrition help as many gamers, both professional and amateur, have poor nutritional habits and could use help turning that around.

For more information about Rise Nutrition, visit https://risenutrition.org/.

Sports Techie, early seed funding came from friends and family, as well grant funding from the UK government investing in high risk, early funding startups. The innovative co-founders are now seeking a medium sized round of investment with the goal of raising 400K in the next six weeks from high net individuals. Preferably in the sports space, but not a deal killer, if not.

Their technologies has application beyond sports. Look for growth in health care, weight loss, recreational sports which is somewhat saturated, the youth markets, and the police, military and fire professions, among others.

I liked that the company has localization plans already in place and in the works with Spanish and Japanese versions next in the developmental pipeline.

Some athletes have undiagnosed eating disorders, While too many eat unbalanced diets without enough proteins, fruits and vegetables, and an abundance of fast food, carbohydrates and the wrong kinds of fats (trans), making the Fuel To Rise app raw data and implementation a must have. The right kind of users are dieticians looking to onboard clients, optimize diets, and wanting to save valuable time with all the processes, as well as smart athletes wanting to understand how to properly fuel their mind and bodies, while making sure their energy (KCal) levels are optimized as needed for peak performance, per sport, position and activity.

For any of our readers and followers looking to find our more information and hopefully, invest in Rise Nutrition, send a direct email to [email protected] or [email protected].

Please let them know sent you!

See you later sportstechie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!

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Tags: Sports Techie, sports technology, sports tech