STATS LLC Buys Bloomberg Sports (BSports) Creating Sports Analytics Leader
The breaking sports technology news out of New York and Illinois today is STATS aggressive acquisition of Bloomberg Sports (BSports) establishing the industries premier resource for sports analytics. STATS, is considered one of the leading sports tech, data metrics and sport content companies in the world, and Bloomberg, might be the top global provider of data analytics making this deal an industry game-changer. I have analyzed both companies software and operations for the Sports Techie community blog readers and follower with past blogs, interviews and expert thoughts. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
BSports brings a complex system of data analysis, sophisticated predictive modelling and proven data systems to this new corporate structuring. By aligning BSports with its Sports Solutions Group, STATS instantly leaps ahead as the industry’s premier resource for sports analytics in the NFL, NBA, and MLB, Premier League and NHL, in addition to other pro leagues, federations and associations. The robust and complete suite of sports data products and services are available to multi-media, team, league, gaming and technology customers. The stats world will never be the same.
“On behalf of everyone here, I would like to welcome the team at Bloomberg Sports to the STATS family,” said STATS CEO Gary Walrath. “Our mission is to revolutionize the way sports are viewed, understood, played, and enjoyed. The addition of BSports’ very talented team and compelling portfolio of products significantly bolsters our global strategy.”
BSports strengthens STATS’ Sports Solutions Group with technology, clients and leadership, plus infrastructure. Nearly every Major League Baseball team is a user of the BSports Pro2 integrated data system. This sportsbiz acquisition positions STATS’ as the Big Data leader in professional baseball. BSports features advanced analytics and science-based predictive models that compile projections and provide a competitive edge for most major sports organizations. These proprietary models are a perfect complement to STATS mission of delivering core sports data to satisfied users.
BSports pioneering President Bill Squadron remains with the company reporting to Walrath. The new BSports division promises to layer Bloomberg Sports technology as the primary sports tech component.
“When we started Bloomberg Sports, our goal was for it to become the industry-leading provider of creative, premium data analytics services to sports professionals and fans, which is exactly what’s happened,” Squadron said. “We are proud of what we have built and are delighted to see it take the next logical step, which is combining forces with the industry’s leading data company.”
The BSports transaction is STATS’ first since becoming a flagship member of Vista Equity Partners’ portfolio of companies after buying the sports tech company from Fox Sports and the Associated Press (AP) back in June for approximately $200 million.
“We believe the combination of data and software analytics will enable STATS to continue to provide its existing and new customers with tremendous value. We are thrilled to welcome the Bloomberg Sports team to the STATS family and plan to continue to build upon the foundation of success they have achieved to date,” said Christian Sowul, Principal at Vista Equity Partners.
About STATS LLC
STATS is the world’s leading sports technology, data and content company. The company passionately abides by a mission to revolutionize the way sports contests are viewed, understood, played and enjoyed. STATS’ calling card consists of real-time scores, historical sports information, Associated Press editorial content, a turnkey fantasy sports operation and SportVU technology. STATS’ worldwide client network of media companies and professional sports leagues and teams utilize a broad spectrum of dynamic in-game broadcast presentations and virtual images, multimedia enhancements and game analysis, and tactical coaching tools. STATS is owned by Vista Equity Partners. For a complete tour of STATS’ sports content portfolio and solutions, visit www.stats.com
About Bloomberg Sports
Launched in 2010, Bloomberg Sports (BSports) takes the technology developed by Bloomberg, the leading global provider in data and analytics, and applies it to the vast data analysis opportunities in sports. BSports delivers services for teams, broadcasters and athletes. It also offers a consumer tool for European football called Match Analysis, a powerful predictive and analytic tool forecasting game results and scores to help bettors “beat the bookie.” BSports has also developed pre- and post-game commentary packs along with on-air graphics for broadcasters such as Sky Sports, Channel 4, Turner and Fox. Bloomberg Sports was named by SportsPro as one of “50 Companies Shaping World Sport,” by Fast Company as a Finalist for the “Most Innovative Technology Companies in Sport,” and by Mashable as one of the “Five Most Innovative Sports Brands for 2012.”
About Vista Equity Partners
Vista Equity Partners, a U.S.-based private equity firm with offices in Austin, Chicago and San Francisco, with approximately $13 billion in cumulative capital commitments, currently invests in dynamic, successful technology-based organizations led by world-class management teams with long-term perspective. Vista is a value-added investor, contributing professional expertise and multi-level support towards companies realizing their full potential. Vista’s investment approach is anchored by a sizable long-term capital base, experience in structuring technology-oriented transactions, and proven management techniques that yield flexibility and opportunity in private equity investing. For more information, please visit www.vistaequitypartners.com.
Sports Techie, I have watched the Sports Technology industry rapidly grow the past four years to well over a $200 billion dollar Industry. Fantasy sports is huge, fantasy football alone generates $11 billion in revenue. ESPN, Yahoo and NBC Sports, plus other sports media properties are creating new value by founding, purchasing and merging with sports tech-centric businesses.
The Former Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, with his $32.8 billion, and after 12-years as an elected official, replaced Daniel Doctoroff yesterday as head of the Bloomberg media empire. At 72, he will assume the role of president and CEO of Bloomberg LP, a news company he founded in 1981. Since 2007, revenue has skyrocketed from $5.4 billion to $9 billion in 2014. Doctoroff was appointed President in 2008 and CEO in 2011.
I asked whether Bloomberg had any part of this historic sports tech deal between BSports and STATS. According to Joe Favorito, Bloomberg Sports PR, “(He had) nothing to do with it.”
In related news, Brian Kopp, stepped down as STATS LLC, Senior Vice President, in August, a position he held since 2008.
My gut feeling is to always read between the lines. Bloomberg has a philanthropic agenda which sports most likely has little or no role to play in, while STATS made the decision to restructure executive roles after the acquisition of BSports, meaning some heads were going to roll.
Either way, sports, the fan experience and franchises win because STATS and BSports combined will produce better systems, solutions and tool, enabling teams, players and sponsors, new opportunities to improve their ROI with performance, scouting and marketing. Player tracking and statistics are now and into the future, at a whole new level after this history-making arrangement.
The world is now driven by sports tech so latch on and enjoy the ride.
See y’all later in Seattle and here in Atlanta.
I will see ya when I see ya, THE Sports Techie @THESportsTechie – http://twitter.com/THESportsTechie
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