Not a Virtual Exit: SportVU Sold to NewsCorp for $18 Million

The Stats Corporation, a joint venture between Rupert Murdock’s News Corp and the Associated Press has acquired Israeli start up SportVU for an undisclosed sum.

TheMarker estimates the deal to be around  $15-18 million – a small but profitable exit for SportVU, whose investors (angels and SkyWalker fund) only put in about $3 million. SportVU recently captured the headlines after debuting its “Hologram” technology on CNN’s special election broadcasting.

SportVU’s technology breakthrough was initially made in sport broadcasting. SportVU’s motion capturing technology collects positioning data of the ball and participants (players and referees) within the playing field in real time. In addition, using complex algorithms SportVU analyzes the accumulated data streams and compiles meaningful information and insights in real time including game speed, accumulated distances, fatigue, fitness graphs, coverage maps and more. The data is displayed on the TV in a non-intrusive way. The solution is already in place in soccer game broadcasting by UK-based Charlton Athletic.

In the official press release, CEO Shimon Katzubes, said:

“The SportVU team looks forward to implementing our technology capabilities with STATS’ rich data and content. Our mission remains the same, we will continue to explore ways to provide unique performance metrics for sports, as well as cutting-edge broadcast systems across the sports landscape and beyond. Our success executing 3D holographic images for CNN on election night was just the start”

SportVU has a headcount of 15 and was founded in 2005 years ago by Dr Miki Tamir. It has been commercially selling its product since January and is currently breaking even. According to the deal terms with Stats, SportVU will remain independent.

Stats Inc plans to use the acquisition to strategically position itself as a leader in real time game statistics. As stated in its website, Stats provides “a worldwide portfolio of sports information solutions, including the company’s hallmark of real-time scores, historical sports information and turnkey fantasy sports operation, along with AP editorial content, breaking sports news and photos

Is the Israeli startup Orad next in line?

Eze Vidra
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Eze Vidra

Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote
Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Ezewas a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google's first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He's an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.
Eze Vidra
Follow me

Eze Vidra

Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Eze was a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google’s first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He’s an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.

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