Two years after launch, Bloomberg Sports is rapidly expanding its offering of data-driven technology tools, signaling the growing demand for advanced analytics by fans and teams alike as the digital capability to deliver such content matures.
The company released an enhanced package of tools for fantasy football players, called Decision Maker 2012, earlier this month. Also this month, it partnered with the Los Angeles Angels baseball team to bring the total number of MLB franchises using its products to 25. In September, it will launch its first soccer product in the United Kingdom. The number of professional baseball players using its personalized analytics tablet app is steadily increasing. And in July, it partnered with the global sports and media giant IMG to help expand into the international market.
Bloomberg Sports was launched in 2010 to take the high-powered analytics technology Bloomberg L.P. most commonly uses in the financial world and apply it to sports. Bill Squadron, who runs the sports operation, is a veteran of the sports tech world. He previously worked at Sportvision, which invented a number of innovations taken for granted today, including the iconic yellow first down line used in football telecasts. He’s pleased with how Bloomberg Sports has developed in two years but says there’s plenty more growth to come.
“One nice thing is that, particularly with the success of the baseball system, governing bodies of most leagues have talked to use about doing different things,” Squadron told Mashable. “We would expect to be within all major sports in two years, maybe three on the outside.”
Perhaps no product best exemplifies the emerging power of deep — and personalized — digital data analytics in sports better than the company’s tablet app for major leaguers, which Squadron says is now used by “dozens if not hundreds” of players. The app is synced to each individual user, tracking his team schedule and pitching schedules for opponents. So, to prep for a matchup with a certain pitcher, for example, the user can automatically review video of all that hurler’s pitches to him over the course of their career match-ups.
Decision Maker 2012, meanwhile, gives hardcore fantasy players access to advanced metrics and statistical comparisons and projections. The upcoming soccer app will function similarly for fans and betters in the U.K. and represents Bloomberg Sports’ first foray into the overseas market and a sport other than baseball or football. But coupled with the IMG partnership, fans, teams and players of other sports around the world can plan on plenty more to come from the company over the next couple years.
Just like, Squadron says, Bloomberg Sports had it planned back in 2010.
“There have obviously been a couple litte twists and turns, but it’s very close to what we had in mind when we started,” he told Mashable. “We wanted to really establish or capabilities and bona fides in baseball especially, then build a platform that could be expanded to other sports from there.”