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🎾Upside Accelerator of the Month: Turbocharge Your Startup At The 2024 Australian Open Tennis. Apply Today!
We are teaming up with Tennis Australia, who run the first Grand Slam of the year (the Aussie Open), to tell you about their innovative startup program.
An organization and event that prides itself on challenging the status quo are calling all sport and entertainment tech founders hoping to make special things happen in 2024 to check out aostartups.ausopen.com
Applications close on November 19. 👊
The key verticals of interest:
➡ the quantified athlete
➡ AI-powered applications for events
➡ PADEL tennis
You can click on the button below to apply to the program. You can also check out the details below.
WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR
For the third intake of AO Startups, we are seeking exceptionally talented founders building groundbreaking technology in the following verticals across sport, health and entertainment.
The Athlete Experience
Technology with a focus on health, wellness and the quantified athlete.
The Event Experience
Technology powered by AI that drives automation in stadia, media and event management.
The Padel Experience
Opportunities focused on growing the commercialization of the sport of Padel.
If you are building product or experiences outside our three core streams, yet will revolutionise sport, health or entertainment, then apply as a Wildcard.
Build brand credibility through official designation as an “AO Startup” in press releases and on your channels
Get access to specific Tennis Australia executives, VC’s and industry leaders to accelerate your journey to sustained success
Achieve product-market fit through advice and testing across all areas of our sport and events
Piloting & Proof of Concept
Gain critical exposure and learning through pilots and proof-of-concepts at the AO or other Tennis Australia channels
HOW IT WORKS
Applications for the 3rd intake for AO Startups
Open: 30 October 2023
Close: 19 November 2023
Shortlisted founders will be interviewed by key Tennis Australia and Wildcard Ventures executives during Nov/Dec 2023.
If successful, your startup will be offered an agreement in December 2023 to realize the potential of this opportunity and become part of our 2023 Portfolio.
Our aim is to develop an ongoing relationship and investment via Wildcard Ventures.
Why did Tennis Australia create AO Startups?
We want to innovate; to challenge the status quo; to make all sport, health and entertainment experiences as compelling as possible. One of the catalysts to make that happen is to connect with high-calibre early-stage founders with an exceptional product. AO Startups is our way to fast-track the impact you can have in our world (and beyond). It also allows us to actively work with founders from a very early stage with the intent of cultivating a relationship and investment over the long term.
What stage of startup company are you looking for?
We will consider technologies at all stages, however, your company must be incorporated to take part. We want to add value to your startup's trajectory, so if you are pre-product, that could be assisting with product development and testing. If you have a product in market, it could be a pilot or proof of concept at the AO or any other part of our Tennis Australia ecosystem.
Where do you accept applications from?
We will accept applications from any country around the world and just like the athletes that grace our courts, we believe champion founders can be born anywhere.
How do I apply?
Applying to AO Startups is straightforward. Simply click on the Apply button and that will take you through the process. You will be asked to set up an account to start your application.
How will applications be evaluated?
Applications will be evaluated across a range of factors including the quality of your team, the market opportunity, your level of ambition, the product and technology itself, and the impact we both can have on each other’s trajectory.
What are the benefits of participating in AO Startups?
AO Startups has been designed to remove friction for founders and TA. It allows founders to cut through; to get access to the type of support, brand awareness and exposure that can often be hard to come by when dealing with big corporates. The AO is one of the highest profile annual sporting events in the world, with an ever-expanding entertainment footprint (think music concerts, esports like Fortnite, NFT drops etc). Tennis is also among the most popular sports on the planet, with Tennis Australia a leading federation internationally. This provides startups with a really unique and vast pipeline of opportunities to access and springboard their business to sustained success.
What does a typical pilot partnership look like?
AO Startups isn’t an off-the-shelf startup program or accelerator. Each startup can consult similar networks for advice but the pilot or proof of concept experience will be individually tailored to each company. For some startups, this may involve a pilot of their technology at the AO while for others still in the product development phase, testing directly with athletes or coaches may be best. Ultimately it’s all about where the most value can be extracted for the startup. In exchange, Tennis Australia will have the option to invest in your company through its venture capital fund, Wildcard Ventures.
Are you looking for just tennis technology?
No, we are looking for technologies with application in tennis, but ideally well beyond.