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Buffalo Startup Weekend to host first event focused exclusively on sports industry

by jmaloni


Tue, Mar 24th 2015 03:20 pm

Powered by AT&T, event aims to help bridge the gap between the sports industry and the tech startup community while also appealing to neighboring sports-centric cities Toronto, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Columbus and Detroit

Buffalo Startup Weekend co-organizers have announced a new Startup Weekend event focused solely on sports-centric startups. Buffalo Startup Weekend Sports! will be held May 1-3 at dig Buffalo. It is the first Startup Weekend event in the country focused on merging the sports industry with the tech startup community. 

Powered by AT&T, this inaugural event encourages entrepreneurs and innovators to create new technologies in second screen fan experiences, sports science and big data, fantasy sports and in-game experiences that cater to the evolving world of sports. The goal of the event is to connect technologists, designers and marketers who are passionate about sports with ideas for improving the industry or fan experience while learning firsthand the intricacies of running a business.

The event will take place May 2, which is rapidly becoming known as the "greatest day in sports" thanks to several major sporting events on airing that day, including the Kentucky Derby, Yankees vs. Red Sox, the Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather fight, and possibly NHL and NBA finals games.

"With four successful Startup Weekend events under our belt, creating a specific themed Startup Weekend event made sense for us to grow beyond Western New York and attract participants from nearby die-hard sports communities, including Toronto, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Columbus and Detroit," Startup Weekend Co-organizer and Z80 Labs Managing Director Steve Poland said. "The successful growth of Buffalo's startup community over the past several years makes the timing right to host a themed event. We chose to focus on sports given the area's history and passion for sports, as well as the fact that Buffalo is home to some of the most well-known sports franchises and sports-centric companies around the country. A sports-themed event presents limitless possibilities."

"AT&T is proud to partner with Buffalo Startup Weekend Sports! to bring this unique event to Western New York, a region in which we are proud to foster local innovation and support the robust tech and startup community," said Marissa Shorenstein, New York president of AT&T. "This event is a perfect forum for entrepreneurs to develop business plans revolving around Western New York's deep-rooted passion for sports, and we are excited to see the creative ideas that will come out of the weekend."

While Startup Weekend has held more than 1,500 events in over 700 cities globally, this is the first themed Startup Weekend event of its kind. WGR 550-AM sports radio personality Jeremy White and CoachMePlus President Kevin Dawidowicz have been selected as judges for the inaugural Buffalo Startup Weekend Sports event. In addition to AT&T as premier sponsor, the event is sponsored by local organizations 19 IDEAS, Helm, InfoTech Niagara and Z80 Labs.

Buffalo Startup Weekend chose to focus on sports thanks to the large collection of quality sports franchises and multinational athletic corporations that call the Queen City home, including the Buffalo Sabres, Buffalo Bills, Pegula Sports and Entertainment, New Era Cap, Delaware North Sportservice and University at Buffalo Division I sports teams. 

To register or to learn more about the event, visit www.buffalo.startupweekend.org. 

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