This week we interviewed Andrew Trimble, CEO of Kairos, a leading operations and communications platform for elite sports teams.
Founded in 2017, Kairos is a tailored and dynamic sports performance platform, unifying all communications and operations across elite sports teams, streamlining daily operations, improving communication and collaboration and enhancing player welfare.
To learn more, please visit http://www.kairostech.io
Picture: Kairos platform and mobile app
As illustrated in the picture below, Kairos has created one centralized communications & operations hub providing elite sports teams and leagues secure & efficient messaging, club & player scheduling, detailed player profiles, integrated surveys, smart appointment booking, file sharing & storage, and academy safeguarding.
Kairos can help teams in many ways. Here is a summary of the key benefits for teams to use Kairos platform:
The world’s only solution focused on the player
Total clarity with streamlined communications
Significant cost/time savings from increased efficiencies
Hugely effective when delivering across multiple sites
Multi-department streamlined input with controlled permissions
Maximised confidence and performance for all Players
Proven at the very highest levels in elite sport
Delivering for the nuances of communications within Youth Academies
As shown in the picture below, Kairos helps teams’ departments better communicate as it touches across all the departments (Coaching, strength & conditioning, sports medicine, scouting & recruiting, performance science, etc.) of a club or league:
Kairos currently supports over 600 teams from 11 different sports across 12 countries globally, with half the English Premier League as well as teams in the NBA, NHL, MLB, MLS, pro rugby teams, or Olympic teams.
Here is a video explaining how One Club, Kairos platform, works:
📝Show Notes: Through this interview with Andrew, we touched on his background, his company, product, and competitive advantages. We also touched on the benefits for the teams and athletes to use its products. We also discussed his business model and his plans for the next 12 months.
Best Quotes: Here’s some of the key discussion points and best quotes from our conversation with Andrew:
On his background in sports as an athlete:
“ I played pro rugby, international rugby for 12 years. I had the best days of my life. I had to create fun and I got to play in some amazing stadiums around the world and I lived the dream. It comes at a cost though. There's a lot of sacrifices, a lot of difficulties. It takes its toll on your body and your family”.
“It's all worth it because it's an amazing life to live. And some of those experiences put me in a good position to really understand and get the grips with that high performance environment is”.
“And off the back of that, a lot of that experience, firsthand experience and knowing that environment intimately, understanding what makes athletes tick, how they want to be communicated, to how they don't want to be communicated to all of that, we were able to channel that understanding and that discovery and that knowledge into the solution that is Kairos now. And this is life after rugby for me”.
On his company Kairos:
“We have a team of 19 people. We've been in the market mainly in the UK soccer (Premier League), international rugby, and we're just starting to get into that US market with our first NBA teams, NHL teams, MLB, MLS, and we're trying to get into the NFL as well”.
“So we're a team of 19 people, split half and half with engineers, and marketing and we've got half of the Premier League in football as customers, and we only launched this system two years ago”.
On how he got the idea of creating the Kairos platform:
“Basically the reason why I had the idea of creating a communication solution, a dedicated internal sports specific communication system and operations system is because in my day we had multiple group chats, threads, it was PDFs and whiteboards”.
On what the Kairos platform is:
“So Kairos is a one-stop shop. It's a sole digital interface between players and team. It removes the issue around different departments using different languages and different pieces of tech such as email, group chat, PDF, and even whiteboards, this sort of stuff”.
“Everything comes through one place. I always think that if there are multiple ways to communicate something in different context from different departments to the athlete, then you're asking the athlete to be a goalkeeper, but they've got 10 sets of goals to defend”.
On the benefits for players and teams to use the Kairos platform:
“Just give the players that one set of goals to defend. They know that anything important comes through this channel. So the mobile app is that. It is a dedicated channel for important information to be put in front of the players. So the players get the assurance that they haven't missed anything”.
“And then the staff members get the assurance that any important information that's shared, it is engaged with the athletes and they've got that assurance that it's been received and understood. So the two big value pieces that Kairos offers teams are the tangible and intangible”.
“The tangible is time. We're just saving your athletes time, we're saving your staff members time every day. We're saving them minutes and hours, and they're allowed to rededicate that time back to improving recovery, improving performance, improving their strategy for the next game”.
“But the intangible benefit is really important as well. And the intangible benefit is a level of professionalism in the team. A level of accountability and a level of understanding this is what's expected. If you receive a document that is standalone for the whole year, if that document sits in an email thread from five months ago, as far as the athlete's concerned, it doesn't exist”.
“So the athlete is not accountable to the information in that document. If that document sits in Kairos and it's pinned to their dashboard and they see that every day, they're accountable for the information”.
On the types of teams that are using the Kairos platform:
“We work with all the big names in English football that you would expect. We're not really supposed to mention them. And this is the same thing with the first couple of teams in NBA and NHL and MLB, that we work with. These are our customers today”.
On their business model:
“So the teams that we work with pay an annual license fee. That annual license fee will be based on two things: The number of teams within their system. So a soccer team the UK, they have a senior men's team, senior women's team, and a number of academy teams”.
“We don’t hike the price of the solution as you naturally add extra users who can benefit from the platform.”
“It depends on how many teams they want to bring on, and then also the level of functionality that they want to bring on as well. We've got a bespoke tier of functionality, which is that customized effect”.
“So we've got three tiers of functionality and we charge, based on that, the number of teams and the level of functionality that they require. So we can accommodate for different layers and different leagues and different requirements”.
On how they can help teams save time:
“The feedback we're getting from staff members and athletes is that we are saving hours of time for them. For example in any given teams, there's 5, 10, 15, 20 staff members and there's a squad of 30, 40 up to 50, 60 players”.
“For example, whenever a staff member is creating a block of availability for players to book into, or for those availability slots to be allocated to players, this is something that takes 5, 10 messages back and forth”.
“They are asking questions such as: Could you take my slot? I have to pick up the kids from school. Can you take that? (…) It's just all this needless back and forth and that takes 5, 10, 15 minutes. Whereas we just show them their availability and book into it. It's like Calendly within”.
“So again we're just saving them 10 minutes, 10 minutes here, 10 minutes there, and by the end of the week, every staff member is saving a couple of hours and most of their players are saving a couple hours as well. So the big value to us, yes, there's all that, saving people time, but the big value to us, one of the bits of feedback that's come back to us a number of times is that we remove the need for lazy questions, and anybody in that environment will know what lazy questions are”.
On their plans for the next 12 months:
“First I think it's really important that we acknowledge we're not an athlete management system (AMS), we're not a GPS provider. But what we are is the player centric one. So it makes sense for us for any additional information to be integrated through the Kairos system. And that's going to be our plans over the next 12, 24 months just to make sure that we want to be the sole digital interface between player and team”.
“And whether that's athletic information, training loads, GPS data, or integrating with additional third parties, that's where we want to be and we want to be adding value there, so from a roadmap perspective, that's the sort of stuff we want to do”.
“We wan to find different ways of communicating as well, and innovating and just adding clarity to players, to players' lives and making staff members more clear and, and more efficient as well”.
“And then from a market perspective, we're really going to try to drive into that US market. We've got initial footholds, as I said in basketball (NBA), and hockey (NHL), and baseball (MLB), and we just want to continue to grow there. The feedback we get from the initial customers that we're working with is really strong, really positive. And if they can be influential and we can continue to drive that momentum and get into other US teams”.
On how teams can contact them to learn more about Kairos:
“You can contact us through the website at https://kairostech.io. You can just fill out a form there, and we'll get back to you really quickly and we can set up a demo and we can take you through, and take you through the system, give you a bit of an idea of the system, and how flexible the system can be. They can also get in touch with you Julien”.
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