Athletes Unlimited today announced the creation and launch of the Athletes Unlimited Innovation Collective. The Innovation Collective is a collection of partners that serve to bring cutting-edge advancements in sport performance, recovery and training products and services to ensure that Athletes Unlimited athletes are competing at the highest level, and to enhance the fan experience through broadcast and multimedia engagements. The innovative new program will see Athletes Unlimited strategically develop partnerships with these cutting-edge, high-growth companies to deliver value to the league, its athletes, and its partners. Athletes Unlimited has developed a disruptive model for pro sports by giving athletes an equity position in the league, and to drive league-wide decision making.
Founding partners of the Innovation Collective include Healium (Supporting VR/AR Mental-Fitness Partner of Athletes Unlimited), VKTRY (Supporting Performance Insole Partner of Athletes Unlimited), Fanoramas (Supporting Fan Photography Partner of Athletes Unlimited), Vizual Edge (Supporting Web Training Partner of Athletes Unlimited), TaskHuman (Supporting Personal Coaching App Partner of Athletes Unlimited), Blue Sky CBD (Supporting CBD Partner of Athletes Unlimited), Yoga Athletex (Supporting Yoga Platform Partner of Athletes Unlimited), and Clicktivated (Supporting Interactive E-Commerce Partner of Athletes Unlimited).
underdog venture team, in close collaboration with CSM Sport & Entertainment, has been identifying and activating the integrated partnerships with these ahead-of-the-trend startups. “We are incredibly fortunate to work hand in hand with these tremendous athletes and authentically integrate partners that help them perform at the highest level,” commented Gina Hagedorn, President, Brand Experiences, CSM Sport & Entertainment.
Healium, VKTRY, Clicktivated, TaskHuman and Vizual Edge are supporting partners across Volleyball, Softball, AUX Softball and Lacrosse in 2022, while Blue Sky CBD is supporting Basketball and Volleyball. Fanoramas and Yoga Athletex are supporting partners of Volleyball. As Athletes Unlimited commits to the growth of women’s sports and supports diversity and inclusion as part of the fabric of the league, so do the Innovation Collective partners with fifty percent of the inaugural partners being founded/co-founded by female and BIPOC entrepreneurs.
Jon Patricof, Athletes Unlimited CEO and Co-Founder, said: “The Athletes Unlimited Innovation Collective will ensure that our athletes have access to the absolute best performance, recovery and training products in all of sports. We are fortunate to have such a strong group of partners that believe in the Athletes Unlimited vision, yet another powerful indicator of the momentum behind women’s sports in general. The innovative structure of these deals will allow Athletes Unlimited and our athletes to benefit short-term from access to products and services and in some cases over the long term in the appreciation of equity.”
“Like an incubator, the Athletes Unlimited Innovation Collective is a testing ground for diverse startups to bring leading tech, health and wellness, and marketing solutions to the athlete experience throughout the AU season, and to enhance the fan experience through in-venue and digital engagements. underdog is proud to be the connector of early-stage startups, technology and wellness companies to a league that is taking women’s professional sports to the next level,” said Nicole Jeter West, CEO of underdog venture team.
The Innovation Collective will continue to grow with new partners across 2022, engaging Athletes Unlimited fans and athletes both in-venue for Volleyball, AUX Softball, Lacrosse, and Softball, and digitally via Athletes Unlimited broadcast, streaming, and social pages.
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