US sports teams turn to Israeli tech

They also presented new ways to foster communication between fans and athletes, teams or brands.

Baseball hat made in Israel. (photo credit: JWG)
Baseball hat made in Israel.
(photo credit: JWG)
What do the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB all have in common? Other than the fact that they are major US sports leagues with three-letter acronyms, they are all interested in how Israeli technology could help their athletes and businesses.
All four groups met with a delegation of 13 Israeli companies in August whose products promise to boost sports performance and viewing, according to a Thursday announcement from the Economy Ministry.
The sports world offers a unique experience of viewing content, connectedness and participation. Sports teams and companies, among the world’s leading brands, are seeking to leverage and harness new platforms and technologies developed by media companies,” said Li Aviram Shoshani, who manages digital media at the Israel Export Institute, which helped organize the mission.
The companies, which traveled to New York and San Francisco, showcased wares including performance- monitoring sensors for athletes, computer technology for watching, capturing and replaying real-time sports and technology for sports video game production.
They also presented new ways to foster communication between fans and athletes, teams or brands.
“It was very exciting to have Israeli companies meet with the biggest names in the industry, including teams like the 49ers, the Raiders, the Dodgers, the Warriors, media groups, venture capital funds among the leaders in Silicon Valley and leading tech companies such as Twitter, Sony and HTC,” said Gili Ovadia, head of the ministry’s Economic and Trade Mission to the West Coast.
“The hundreds of meetings scheduled in advance for the Israeli companies are the best evidence of the power of innovation of Israeli industry,” he added.
Nili Shalev, Israel’s former economic minister to North America, said the mission followed efforts to bring a broader array of Israeli technologies to US markets.
“Over the past few months, we have hosted dozens of Israeli companies in the US in sectors like IoT [Internet of Things], augmented reality and virtual reality, cybersecurity, homeland security and educational technologies,” she said.
“The delegation of sports technology companies was a wonderful opportunity for us to showcase Israeli innovation and to create business opportunities in one of the hottest and most popular fields in the world,” she added.
August’s mission follows a similar event in London last year, and will be followed by another road show in Germany and Spain this November.