IMG Arena boosts sports data capabilities with FlightScope takeover

IMG Arena has added FlightScope Services to its portfolio after announcing the acquisition of the sports technology firm to enhance its data gathering, insights and analysis capacity for tennis and golf.

Having previously collaborated on various sports data projects dating back to 2013, the two parties had also formerly collaborated to develop a customised data collection system for golf’s European Tour – providing best-in-class data capture, record keeping, and tracking of in-play match developments.

Securing the deal, IMG Arena stated that it would invest significantly to expand FlightScope technology and data gathering capacities to service its wider portfolio of football, basketball and volleyball, and major US sports. 

As a result of the acquisition, the Poland-based FlightScope team is set to be fully incorporated within IMG Arena’s sports tech unit, which will be significantly expanded with 160 new employees as a result of the deal.

The enlarged tech unit will be led by FlightScope executives Jacek Gronek and Wojtek Szumilas, who have joined IMG Arena leadership as VP Rightsholder Services and Head of Technology respectively.

Gronek noted: “FlightScope Services joining the IMG Arena business is a natural union born out of synergies in product, customer base and, most importantly, culture and vision. It will enable us to leverage our knowledge, strengths and resources to deliver an enhanced range of best-in-class services and technologies across multiple sports.” 

IMG Arena disclosed that following the closure of its deal, FlightScope’s brand name will be retained by company founder Henri Johnson, who will be allowed to utilise the company brand to develop professional and consumer-related products.   

“The integration of FlightScope Services technology is a fundamental part of our growth strategy and provides the foundation for the launch of our new Rightsholder Solutions,” added Freddie Longe, Managing Director, IMG Arena. “This new pillar within IMG Arena will see us enhance the services we provide to rightsholders to include automated and manual content creation, content governance and operational excellence.

“The acquisition allows IMG Arena to enrich our innovation in fan engagement via the development of data and audio-visual content, while creating new content and commercial opportunities for federations and rights holders across our portfolio.”