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HomeDAS & In Building Wireless5GProptech scores big in sports arenas, other venues

Proptech scores big in sports arenas, other venues

Property technology (proptech) startup companies have been steadily offering their services to sports arenas to improve fans’ game-day experience, Commercial Observer reports. Companies are looking to make it easier for fans to enter stadiums as well as improve available amenities.

For example, Wicket Software, a computer vision technology company for ticketing, uses facial recognition authentication in place of the paper and digital ticket process, Chief Marketing Officer Jeff Boehm told Commercial Observer. The computer vision algorithm can identify or match someone’s face within a second with a previously submitted photo of themselves. Boehm noted Wicket Software’s tech has also been used in corporate facilities.

The Cleveland Browns first used Wicket’s solution in 2020 as fans were beginning to be allowed in stadiums after the COVID-19 pandemic. The tech allowed people to keep their masks on and minimize touch and interaction.

“We were able to prove out our technology so that people — even with face masks on — didn’t have to pull out their phones, didn’t have to touch anything, didn’t have to pass a physical ticket, and could get into the stadium safely,” Boehm said.

Meanwhile, Manhattan-based SocialSign.in has been used in sports arenas since 2011. The company uses its guest Wi-Fi technology to learn about fans and establish relationships with potential customers. It helps teams personalize their in-stadium Wi-Fi interactions, handle regulatory requirements regarding privacy and consent, as well as monetize audience channels, according to SocialSign.in CEO Mike Perrone.

“We are a later-stage startup that enables sports stadiums to transform the amenity of fan-facing guest Wi-Fi into a first-party marketing, ad and sponsorship channel, turning an operating expense into a revenue-generating asset,” he told Commercial Observer.

On the personal side of things, proptech startup SOS provides cashless smart vending machines for fans. The machines may contain personal products such as deodorant, sunscreen, lip balm, hair ties, face wipes and free period care. SOS’ machines are currently in the Boston Red Sox’ Fenway Park, the Jacksonville Jaguars’ TIAA Bank Field and the Florida Panthers’ FLA Live Arena in Sunrise, Florida.

“We fit into the proptech vision and ecosystem in that we’re delivering an experience and an enhancement for managers and the facilities side of the business, while also driving new commercial opportunities within that organization,” SOS co-CEO Susanna Twarog told Commercial Observer. “We are also a channel and have a product that is tech-enabled, collecting and capturing a tremendous amount of valuable data for the brands that we work with.”

Proptech startup Aunt Flow is also addressing women’s personal needs in sports arenas, Commercial Observer reports. The company, backed by JLL Spark Ventures, has its products in more than 25 professional sports venues, including organic cotton tampons and pads from free-vending dispensers in bathrooms. The company’s products have been sought after as many stadiums have clear or no-bag policies, which limit what fans can bring into the stadium, according to Aunt Flow CEO Claire Coder.

Sports arenas are also using proptech for their construction needs. For example, T2D2 uses artificial intelligence to assess structural damage and deterioration within a stadium through drone and ground-based images. The company is building digital twins of facilities and a condition assessment dashboard that’s consistently updated, T2D2 Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Ehrlich said.

The images of building damage are ranked by severity, allowing facility managers to determine where maintenance efforts need to be put first.

“T2D2’s artificial intelligence allows stadium management to capture a snapshot of their building condition at a given point in time and monitor any potential concerns on an ongoing basis,” Ehrlich told Commercial Observer. “This helps stadiums develop comprehensive maintenance and repair plans, especially when it comes to preserving any corroding concrete or steel.”

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