- The three startups presented their solutions to Rafa Nadal and are to develop them with the goal of improving athletes’ performance.
- More than 160 projects from Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America and Oceania were submitted to the call for proposals made by the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar and Telefónica Open Future_.
Manacor, 14 June 2017 – The Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar and Telefónica Open Future_ today announced the three winning startups for the competition, which was aimed at entrepreneurs and innovators developing technological sports solutions. The event, which took place at the Academy itself, was attended by Rafa Nadal and Ana Segurado, global director of Telefónica Open Future_, as well as by representatives from the three winners: iAltitude, Vilynx and Spinn Technologies.
The three winning startups have given demonstrations of their solutions directly to Rafa Nadal and will be working to develop these in conjunction with the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar and Telefónica Open Future_; in the case of iAltitude, this startup will also receive a joint investment of 220,000 euros.
At the event, the CEO of iAltitude, Manuel Jordán, led a demonstration of the personalised simulated-altitude training platform, which brings innovative training benefits directly to athletes, without the need for them to stay for weeks at a time in natural high-altitude locations. In addition, the platform enables trainers and athletes to remotely access the athlete and ecosystem data in a personalised manner, to improve their performance and reduce injuries.
The Vilynx project, the latest startup launched by Juan Carlos Riveiro (an entrepreneur for the last 16 years who holds over 100 patents), and Elisenda Bou, expert in machine learning and neural networks, looks to reinvent internet video viewing for athletes via an algorithm that works like a neural network. This enables it to process more than 10,000 videos a day and learn from these in order to create learning patterns that can then be applied to prevent injuries in elite sportsmen and sportswomen, as well as spotting the sporting ability and potential for success of the children who are beginning to excel in tennis.
Spinn Technologies, represented by its CEO, Noelia Sanz, showed how it is possible to place technology within the grasp of tennis players through an app, transforming each court into a smart court. The app records all the activities taking place on the court, and later measures the speed of the ball, serving speed, contact zones, distance travelled, pace, calories and point counting.
This first step by Rafa Nadal into technological entrepreneurship has been, in his own words, “a real education about the process which, based on specific needs, seeks out projects that manage to meet your expectations. Some projects have even contributed improvements to other aspects of the Academy we had not envisaged.”
“Open innovation is the best way to take the best ideas and the most disruptive proposals to any sector, company or human discipline, and transform them, optimising resources and human abilities”, said Ana Segurado, global director of Telefónica Open Future_. “It is the way to apply entrepreneurial solutions from any corner of the globe to specific needs, and this has astounding results.”
In this initial joint call for proposals between Open Future_ and the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar, the ranking of entries by country was led by Spain, with 47.5% of the total, followed by Colombia, Peru, Brazil and Venezuela. All the technological solutions focused on sporting issues and smart management (in particular, sports facilities and training centres), audiovisual and media content, and wellness and e-health, with the goal of improving the performance and value of the Rafa Nadal Academy.
About Telefónica Open Future_
Telefónica Open Future is Telefonica´s global platform designed to connect entrepreneurs, startups, investors and public and private partners around the world to capture innovation and business opportunities. Its goal is to support talent at all stages of growth through a comprehensive model for acceleration that is designed to connect talent with organisations, investors and companies. The programme incorporates all of Telefónica Group’s open innovation, entrepreneurship and investment initiatives (Think Big, Talentum, Crowdworking, Wayra, Amérigo and Telefónica Ventures) through a global network that is open to participation by external partners that wish to develop their own entrepreneurial and investment strategies, and connect to large corporates. To date, more than 51,000 proposals have been analysed, over 1,700 startups have been accelerated and 750, invested. Telefónica Open Future_ is present in 17 countries and has committed to investment, with its partners, a total of 445 million euros. More info: https://www.openfuture.org/en
About Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar
The Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar is a residential complex with top class tutoring (able to accommodate 140 students), which combines tennis with education, offering young players aged between 11 and 18 years old the opportunity to receive their schooling at the American International School of Mallorca while they train to become professional tennis players. This project aims to transmit all the knowledge that Rafa Nadal has gained through his training, as well as the experiences he has had over his career as a professional tennis player. To this end, he has transformed his training facility into a high-performance academy where, with the collaboration of his team, he is training the future’s young tennis players. Further information: www.rafanadalacademy.com
Communications Department at Telefónica Open Future_:
Marisa Orellana: 617 86 30 30 / [email protected]
Miguel Ángel García: 699 37 18 07 / [email protected]