A new initiative that seeks to develop Sports Technology research and business growth in Ireland has been set up in Limerick, spearheaded by three female tech entrepreneurs.

SportsTech Ireland aims to be a bridge between commercial bodies, start-ups and entrepreneurs, research facilities and VCs, and has partnered with a number of international organisations to help position Ireland as a global destination for SportsTech companies.

The not-for- profit initiative is committed to doubling the number of SportsTech companies operating in Ireland by 2020.

They plan to do this through mentoring and commercialization programs, the promotion of research, and the positioning of a landing zone with a dedicated performance lab for SportsTech companies looking to locate in Ireland.

Martina Skelly, CEO of patient booking platform YellowSchedule and one of SportsTech Ireland’s founders said; “Sports technology is a fast moving vertical with massive evolutions in everything from wearables to player analytics, to sports performance measurement. Our research indicates that the market will be worth over $113B by 2021.”

She continued: “Ireland is perfectly positioned to be a gateway for SportsTech companies in the US, and to drive growth, both indigenous and from abroad, through the creation of a strong support network on the ground.”

Gráinne Barry, fellow founder says that Limerick is the ideal home for a SportsTech Hub Ireland. “Limerick is at the heart of Ireland’s passion for sport. Not only that, a world class university and sporting campus, access to the airport, competitive costs and a wealth of space all combine to make Limerick one of the most attractive, cities in Europe to do business.”

“With over 40 such companies already in Ireland, the opportunity existed to bring them together for collaboration and a network effect,” she said.

Emily Ross, Tech PR specialist and the third founder of the SportsTech Ireland says that the reaction to their efforts has been overwhelmingly positive, both at home and abroad. “We’ve been working hard over the past year connecting the dots.

“That means reaching out to athletes, coaches, educators, innovators and entrepreneurs to build a network that supports the sharing of ideas, experience and research. SportsTech hubs in Tel Aviv, Paris and Berlin are leading the way, and with their help, we are taking what works to create the best possible ecosystem here in Ireland.”

SportsTech Ireland launched at King John’s Castle in Limerick on Thursday evening with keynote addresses from leading sports and business investors and supporters from Ireland and the US.

To view SportsTech Ireland’s official website click here