LOS ANGELES, March 29, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The Los Angeles Dodgers and R/GA Ventures are pleased to announce that applications are now open for the second class of the LA Dodgers Sports and Entertainment Accelerator. The accelerator, the first of its kind in the sports industry, is revolutionizing how fans, athletes, and sports organizations intersect with technology.
The upcoming program will build upon the achievements of the highly successful 2015 class. Featuring unmatched access to industry partnerships and expertise, the program is designed to ignite a path to category leadership for participating startups.
"The overwhelming success of the Dodgers' first sports and entertainment accelerator opened our eyes to the profound impact that today's rising technology companies can have on sports," said Dodgers' President & CEO Stan Kasten. "We're committed to bringing the best new experiences to our fans, and the best new technologies to our team. We also are excited to use the Dodger brand and our organizational reach to help these young companies grow."
"The ingenuity that the Dodgers and R/GA witnessed in the 10 companies selected to participate in the first accelerator has made our decision to continue the program an easy one," said Dodgers' Chief Financial Officer Tucker Kain. "The response we received for our first class from across the sports and technology industry was a strong validation of the value of the program and we look forward to continuing this momentum with the next class."
Five to seven startups will be selected, enabling in-depth engagement with the Dodgers' leadership, business units, and industry network as well as R/GA's award-winning strategic marketing, branding, design, and technology services. This high-touch approach has already resulted in groundbreaking partnership deals and soon-to-be-announced large capital raises for participants in the 2015 accelerator class.
"The exposure to world-class industry partners and game-changing strategic guidance from the Dodgers and R/GA has opened up significant new opportunities for our company," said program alumnus Travis McDonough, CEO of Kinduct Technologies. "Even though before the program we had already raised significant equity and had built a growing customer base, participating in the Dodgers-R/GA Accelerator was one of the best strategic business decisions our company has ever made."
Program areas of interest include (but are not limited to) integrated solutions in the areas of Fan Engagement, VR/AR, eSports, Sports Training, Smart Arenas, Big Data and Analytics, Fitness and Youth Sports, and Sponsor Integration. The program will again be operated and supported by R/GA, which will bring to the program its full set of services along with its network of global brand partners.
"Startups from our inaugural class came out of the program with revitalized commercialization strategies and new partnerships that catalyzed their business models," said Stephen Plumlee, Global Chief Operating Officer, R/GA and Managing Partner of R/GA Ventures. "We are excited to bring our unique methodology and global network to a new class of startups innovating in the sports and entertainment space."
Growth-stage and early-stage startups from Los Angeles and around the world are invited to apply. The companies selected will be a dynamic mix of early-stage startups that are developing new technologies, products, and services, as well as growth-stage startups that have achieved initial product-market fit and are poised to accelerate their growth.
Applications will be accepted beginning on March 29th through June 10th, 2016. The program will take place in Los Angeles and will start on August 22, 2016, concluding in early November with invite-only demo events in both Los Angeles and New York, at which each startup will have the opportunity to present to investors, industry leaders, and the sports, technology, and entertainment communities.
About the LA Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers franchise, with six World Series championships and 21 National League pennants since its beginnings in Brooklyn in 1890, is committed to a tradition of pride and excellence. The Dodgers are dedicated to supporting a culture of winning baseball, providing a first-class, fan-friendly experience at Dodger Stadium, and building a strong partnership with the community. With the highest cumulative fan attendance in Major League Baseball history, and a record of breaking barriers, the Dodgers are one of the most cherished sports franchises in the world. Visit the Dodgers online at www.dodgers.com, follow them on Twitter @Dodgers and like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Dodgers. For media information, visit www.dodgerspressbox.com.
R/GA, the company for the Connected Age, develops products, services and communications to grow our clients' brands and businesses. Founded in 1977, the agency has been a pioneer at the intersection of technology, design and marketing with work spanning web, mobile, and social communications, retail and e-commerce, product innovation, brand development and business consulting. R/GA has more than 1,500 employees globally with offices across the United States, Europe, South America, and Asia-Pacific and is part of The Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE: IPG), one of the world's largest advertising and marketing services organizations. R/GA is a member of the GAN (gan.co), a network of the world's most respected accelerators and organizations in support of the startup ecosystem. For more information about R/GA, please visit www.rga.com, @rgaventures, and www.rgaaccelerator.com.
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