With a SAP collaboration and a round A underway, Pico comes out punching from Covid-19 crisis

The Israeli startup is currently working with over 60 sports teams globally from some of the biggest leagues in the world and was selected to take part in SAP’s first-ever fan experience–focused startup accelerator program.

It is no secret that there are many tech companies that benefited from Covid-19. For Haifa-based startup Pico, which has created a technology to turn engaged, anonymous sports and entertainment fans into identifiable customer profiles to support business objectives, the pandemic has not only been good for business but has helped validate what the company has been preaching for years.

“Covid-19 accelerated our growth tremendously. In the last two years we were running around with our sales pitch that you have to know who your digital fans are because most of your fans are online and not at your stadium and you don’t have data about them and need to start building this database. Now it isn’t us doing the pitch, it is the teams and the leagues doing it,” Pico CEO Asaf Nevo told CTech. “Everyone in the industry now says we have to understand who these people are. They suddenly realize there is a void, sometimes of tens of millions of fans, that they are spending tens of millions of dollars a year to engage with, but have no idea who they are. In these rough times when we don’t know when people will be back at stadiums, we have to understand who they are, start monetizing them, and begin to look at digital engagement as a new revenue stream.”

Pico is currently working with over 60 sports teams globally from some of the biggest leagues in the world, including the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers, German football Bundesliga clubs Werder Bremen and Borussia Dortmund and several NHL teams.

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SAP.iO Co-Leads Innovation with Munich’s SAP Garden

SAP announced its first-ever fan experience–focused startup accelerator program. From the latest SAP.iO Foundry location in Munich, eight startups have been chosen to participate in the upcoming fall cohort held in collaboration with SAP Garden, a multipurpose sports arena being built by Red Bull in Munich’s Olympiapark.

The collaboration aims to identify innovative technologies for use in in the stadium. SAP Garden will be the new home for local top teams EHC Red Bull München and FC Bayern München Basketball as well as for public ice sports.

Red Bull and FC Bayern München have been longtime SAP customers. With a passion for innovation, creativity and success, the three stakeholders are coming together to pool their expertise to set new standards for the fan experience.

“Together with our long-standing partners and customers Red Bull and FC Bayern, we want to create unforgettable fan experiences in the SAP Garden,” said Thomas Saueressig, member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and responsible for SAP Product Engineering. “The SAP Garden will show innovative solutions and technologies from SAP and startups that put fans front and center. We are looking forward to working together with the cohort to build tailor-made solutions that elevate the fan experience in the SAP Garden.”

SAP.iO Foundry Munich is part of SAP’s strategic business unit designed to accelerate innovation and drive new business models for SAP. The SAP.iO Foundries program is a global network of equity-free accelerator programs located in strategic hubs. It provides startups with access to mentorship, exposure to SAP technologies, and opportunities to meet and collaborate with SAP customers.

The selected startups will work closely with mentors at SAP, Red Bull and FC Bayern to develop proofs-of- concept, access SAP technology and application programmable interfaces (APIs), and identify opportunities to collaborate with SAP executives and customers. The accelerator program will run for three months and conclude with a demo day in early December.

The cohort consists of the following startups:

  • Ariadne Maps provides a crowd analytics platform enabling retailers to infer meaningful insights from traffic data and trends to optimize advertising and marketing, maximize sales and offer the best service to visitors.
  • MultiBall merges sports and gaming, using fully immersive interactive solutions that combine fitness, entertainment and education while providing marketing opportunities for businesses.
  • io is reinventing the sports fan experience using augmented reality, allowing spectators to visualize and interact with live data, which is directly overlaid on top of the pitch and even on top of the players — in stadium or at home.
  • INS Insider Navigation Systems delivers a hardware-independent augmented reality indoor navigation system enabling precise 3D positioning, intuitive navigation and location-based AR content.
  • Pico turns engaged, anonymous online fans into identifiable customer profiles through personalized, one-to-one messaging, driving conversion from existing digital channels and increased revenue from enhanced sponsorships, tickets and merchandise sales.
  • TAWNY offers an emotion analytics software-as-a-service solution to capture and analyze human affective states driving consumer decisions and behavior.
  • Wagawin drives user engagement with interactive advertisements, allowing businesses to gain unique audience insights leading to more customized advertising options.
  • Zippin enables retailers to quickly deploy frictionless shopping in their stores, by employing artificial intelligence, machine learning and sensor fusion technology to create the best consumer experience. In December 2019, Zippin raised a $12 million Series A funding round, in which the SAP.iO program was a contributing investor.

Swap Your Frequent Flyer Guilt For Sustainable Air Travel

The air travel industry is waking up to a post-pandemic world filled with people who have a heightened awareness of climate change and sustainability. The entrepreneurs behind Jet-Set Offset are turning these concerns into action for both consumers and businesses. Using the startup’s carbon-based offsetting tool, companies can donate one cent for every air mile flown by employees to environmental non-profit organizations.

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SAP.iO Foundry San Francisco Launches Accelerator Program Focused on Travel and Expense Management

SAP) kicked off the SAP.iO Foundry San Francisco business-to-business (B2B) travel technology accelerator, with eight early-stage enterprise startups.

This program is geared to improving the travel and expense management experience for SAP’s customers, and includes the SAP Concur portfolio. Startups in the program will have access to curated mentorship, exposure to SAP technology and application programmable interfaces (APIs), and opportunities to collaborate with SAP customers.

“Collaboration with SAP.iO will help foster an open innovation ecosystem and will help us deliver new emerging technologies that bring value to our customers,” SAP Concur President Jim Lucier said. ” We look forward to working with the rising stars in the travel technology industry and helping them scale.”

The following startups are participating in the SAP.iO Foundry San Francisco Spring 2020 program:

  • Bacarai is launching the world’s first group airfare marketplace — providing travelers the ability to shop, purchase and manage group trips online.
  • Hotailors is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform that provides enterprises with full visibility over contingent worker travel, ensuring that bookings meet travel policies, expense limits and safety standards.
  • Jet-Set Offset provides technology that enables companies to offset their carbon footprint generated from flying with an automatic one-cent-per-mile donation to an environmental nonprofit organization chosen by the individual or company.
  • Jojonomic is the first mobile expense management system in Southeast Asia connected to the region’s financial and tech ecosystem, serving tens of thousands of users across hundreds of enterprises.
  • Lumo is a platform that uses machine learning to predict flight delays. Lumo’s APIs and SaaS products are used by travelers, travel management companies, airlines, travel insurance and travel technology companies to help proactively manage disruptions hours to weeks in advance.
  • RoadGoat is a location-technology platform that enables businesses to integrate critical data consisting of about 4.3 million travel destinations, driving rich user experiences that translate to higher engagement and increased bookings.
  • Tripgrid is a flexible project-based workspace that helps businesses automate and streamline travel workflows, such as travel documents and reports, data normalization and cost reconciliation.
  • 30SecondsToFly produces software employing artificial intelligence for the travel management industry to help automate call centers, providing greater service at lower operational costs.

The accelerator program will conclude with an SAP.iO Demo Day presentation at the beginning of June.