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Irish sports tech firm Kitman Labs raises €45m in funding round

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Irish sports tech company Kitman Labs has raised $52 million (€45 million) in a major new Series C funding round led by Guggenheim Investments. The financing takes total fundraising by the company to date to $82 million.

Founded in 2012 in Dublin by Stephen Smith, Kitman is working to reduce the risk of injury within professional sports by using artificial intelligence and data science to improve athletes’ health, welfare and performance.

More than 700 elite teams across the NFL, the NHL, Major League Baseball, the NCAA college sports body in the US, the English Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, the Bundesliga, the Pro14, Premiership Rugby and Japan’s Top League use Kitman’s technology platform. Clients include Chelsea, LA Galaxy and Bayer Leverkusen.

Kitman has been in expansion mode in recent years, buying up both the Sports Office and Presagia Sports. Last year, it revealed plans to double its headcount in the Republic to nearly 90 people with many of the new roles based at its innovation centre in Dublin.

Product development

Mr Smith said the new financing will be used, in part, to continue to boost headcount as well as accelerating product development.

“We are empowering teams to move quickly into the new paradigm for sports performance and talent strategy, characterised by bringing together data, people and processes.

“Our fully scalable operating system for sport bridges the gap between legacy software, trackers and wearables, consolidating them into one centralised platform that creates real-time insights that improve performance on and off the field,” said Mr Smith.

“With the support of Guggenheim Investments, we can scale the company faster to create the industry standard solution and accelerate ongoing innovation to stay ahead of the rapidly changing market requirements in sport,” he added.

Guggenheim Investments is a global asset investment and advisory firm with more than $259 billion in assets under management. Other backers of Kitman include QVIDTVM, Blue Run Ventures, Sony and a number of well-known Irish angels. These include former Paddy Power senior executives Patrick Kennedy, Stewart Kenny and Andrew Algeo; ex-Arthur Cox managing partner Pádraig Ó Ríordáin and former rugby international Jamie Heaslip.

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Sports Tech

Fitness Apps Market Could Be Worth $120.37B by 2030

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By 2030, the fitness app industry could be worth a total of $120.37 billion, according to a study by Allied Market Research.

  • In 2020, the fitness apps market was worth a total of $13.78 billion.
  • The compound annual growth rate would be 24.3%.

North America held the largest market share in 2020, with one-third of the global market. But the report projects that the market in the “Asia-Pacific” will grow at the fastest rate worldwide.

The study suggested that an increased awareness of “a healthy lifestyle” and “diet-related diseases,” as well as an increased use of devices carrying these apps, will all contribute to the boom.

But it also put a major emphasis on how the global pandemic — and a movement toward working remotely — has pushed consumer interest toward at-home fitness solutions.

Choose Your Device

The study found that smartphones accounted for the largest share of devices used for fitness apps in 2020, but suggested that fitness wearables would see the largest growth of all devices.

Meanwhile, brands are getting creative with their fitness interfaces. When Facebook rebranded as Meta, CEO Mark Zuckerberg unveiled several workout options using the brand’s Quest VR headset.

Report by Front Office Sports

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