Financial Review

Melbourne sports technology firm Catapult Sports will target more clients in the rich National Basketball Association in the United States after agreeing a tie-up with a leading sports analysis and statistics firm.

Catapult last week agreed to deal with SportVU, a technology firm that uses fixed cameras inside stadiums to measure player movement.

Adir Shiffman, chairman of Catapult, described the agreement as a "co-operation and collaboration" deal whereby the firms would look to service new and existing clients together.

Catapult provides GPS tracking devices, worn under player shirts and jerseys, and the statistical software package that allows coaches and sports science specialists to measure player movement and fatigue during matches and training.

The information can then be used to make decisions about player training loads, as well as tracking heart rate and speed movements in order to made tactical and training decisions.

"We think this deal [with SportVU] closes the loop between game tracking and training analysis in terms of health, performance and injury management," Shiffman said.

"We both have a close relationship with the NBA head office and we’re getting closer to athlete analytics being an integral part of the NBA."

Mavericks Boss in Advisory Role

Catapult currently has at least six of the 30 NBA teams as clients. The firm also works with 400 elite sports organisations around the world, including English football clubs, several Olympic sports and college teams.

In April, billionaire Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban bought a small stake in Catapult for a few million dollars, and is helping the company in an advisory role.

"He helps us get over that credibility test in the US market," Shiffman said. "That is why we wanted him."

SportVU is owned by Stats Inc, which was sold by Fox Sports and Associated Press to San Francisco private equity firm Vista Equity Partners in May for an estimated $US200 million to $US250 million.


Some description