Arsenal Launches Innovation Lab Dedicated To Sports & Technology – Forbes

Professional sports teams are becoming increasingly involved in technology and innovation. So much so that some franchises go as far as launching hubs dedicated to the investment and incubation of startups, in the hope that it will positively impact athletic and business performance.

The list of professional sports teams with innovation labs includes FC Barçelona, Los Angeles Dodgers, Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia 76ers—and now, English Premier League team, Arsenal F.C.

LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 09: General view outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Arsenal and AFC Bournemouth at Emirates Stadium on September 9, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Arsenal recently announced the launch of the Arsenal Innovation Lab.

The Arsenal Innovation Lab is a ten-week startup accelerator program to connect Arsenal with startups that can help shape the future of the football club, on and off the pitch. To identify the best startups that can address their most important business challenges, Arsenal has partnered with corporate innovation and early-stage investment company, L Marks.

Arsenal and L Marks will be working together to find sports and technology startups to help the club across five specific categories. For each of the five categories, an Arsenal senior executive will be assigned to provide mentorship to participating startups.

Below are the five categories and mentors assigned to each:

1) IMPROVING MATCHDAY EXPERIENCE – To give fans the best possible matchday experience, from the moment they leave their house to arriving in their seat at Emirates Stadium, and back again.

 Mentor(s): Charlotte Kenny, Head of Fan Services // Tom McCann, Head of Sales, Service & Operations

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2) ENGAGING FANS GLOBALLY – To provide memorable experiences to Arsenal’s millions of fans around the world.

Mentor: Charles Allen, Head of Marketing

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3) TRANSFORMING PARTNER OFFERING – To provide new ways to build strong partnerships that benefit both the club and the supporters.

 Mentor: Alex Wicks, Head of Partnership Development

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4) BUILDING A RETAIL OPERATION FOR THE FUTURE – To offer a world-class experience to supporters when they shop online, visit stores or take a tour of the stadium.

 Mentor: Simon Lilly, Retail Director

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5) WILDCARD – To connect with innovative technologists and entrepreneurs that can help take the franchise forward.

Mentor: James Murray, Head of Business Strategy

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