SportsEngine, an NBC Sports Group company and leading youth sports technology provider has launched the SportsEngine Marketplace using OpenChannel, simplifying day-to-day tasks for over 35 million athletes, parents and coaches.
Who is SportsEngine
SportsEngine grew from the the University of Wisconsin and founders Justin Kaufenberg and Carson Kipfer. Both were lifelong athletes whose parents volunteered as coaches and league administrators.
They saw first hand the work their parents did to keep them playing. That meant everything from registration and financial management to background screening and game management.
In 2008, no one was building a platform to connect players and their families to the necessary office systems. Justin and Carson set out to build a youth sports management platform and SportsEngine has evolved by building and acquiring all the functionality needed for every athlete, sports family and team.
Just before the 2016 Summer Olympics, NBC Sports announced their acquisition of SportsEngine as their home of youth sports. The acquisition accelerated SportsEngine’s ability to connect the entire youth sports ecosystem all the way up to the Olympics. NBC even encourages youth athletes to “start their own olympic journey” with SportsEngine.
SportsEngine is now the leading software for sports life management with over 35 million athletes, parents and coaches, and industry leading stats (we know how athletes and sports fans love stats….:)
SportsEngine is positioned to open their platform to third party apps, technology, partners and services they love (but don’t want to build themselves), becoming the go-to platform for youth sports everywhere.
What is the SportsEngine Marketplace
SportsEngine Marketplace is the home base within SportsEngine for apps and services that enhance the lives of athletes, parents, coaches, and administrators. It’s the central place for apps, partners and services to connect with clubs, teams and sports families.
The youth sports technology space has evolved and SportsEngine is the best venue for technology companies to connect their services with a youth sports audience. Admittedly, SportsEngine struggled and had a few false starts when deciding how to invite third-party technology into their platform.
They knew a high quality app store could be the answer and partnered with OpenChannel to build and launch their new Marketplace.
They’ve also re-imagined their API environment to make it easy for apps to integrate with key areas of the platform.
“Our solutions have provided administrators, coaches and families with the ability to spend more time focusing on their young athletes and furthering their love of sport,” says Justin Kaufenberg, CEO, SportsEngine.
“SportsEngine Marketplace doubles down on that mission and provides a place for companies that share our passion for youth sports to connect with our community, while providing products and services that can be integrated with the SportsEngine platform.”
The launch of SportsEngine Marketplace proves the company’s ongoing commitment to provide value added benefits along with its suite of core solutions for sports organizations to run their websites, tournaments, leagues, online registrations and mobile apps successfully.
“With the SportsEngine platform and our Marketplace of connected apps and services, customers now have a single source provider for all sports organization management needs.” says Kaufenberg.
Why the SportsEngine Marketplace Matters
The Marketplace is an equal part of the SportsEngine platform and offers the best tech right when users need it, whether that’s a native tool or a Marketplace tool.
Over the next few months, they’ll be expanding their engagement efforts and introducing “Sports Life Moments”. This will proactively invite users into the Marketplace in a natural and contextual way, suggesting apps as solutions to specific user challenges.
- After signing up for the season and before the first practice, parents may need to organize carpools – there’s an app for that!
- For parent-volunteers elected to help with fundraising – there’s a whole category of apps and services for that!
- For coaches new to a sport – there are training and skill assessment apps!
- And the list goes on and on…
They plan to tactfully share Marketplace Partners at the best possible moment and using the best possible tactics, including inline and in-product messaging, email journeys, monthly newsletters, co-branded community articles, mobile push notifications and more.
Apps and services interested in being featured on the SportsEngine Marketplace can fill out an application. Once approved you can manage your listings, access assets to promote your product and leverage the SportsEngine API to offer even more functionality on the Marketplace.
A Proud Marketplace Partnership
We’ve all been shaped by our experiences in youth sports and at OpenChannel, we’re proud to support SportsEngine in their mission to help “the world play smarter and live more”. We couldn’t think of any better mission, play on!