WASHINGTON, D.C. —December 9, 2016– The NFL Players Association (NFLPA) today launched the OneTeam Collective, a groundbreaking, athlete-driven business accelerator for innovative companies seeking to incorporate sports strategies to drive growth.
In the creation of the OneTeam Collective, the NFLPA is joined by six other founding partners–Harvard Innovation Lab, Intel, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), LeadDog Marketing Group, Madrona Venture Group and the Sports Innovation Lab. The Collective will offer companies access to NFLPA’s brightest stars via licensing, marketing and content rights, research and development, funding and mentorship for product development and marketing support.
“We are thrilled to bring together this remarkable group of world-class partners,” said Ahmad Nassar, President of NFL Players, Inc. and the OneTeam Collective board chairman. “Together we will help companies unlock the value of the world’s greatest unifier – sports and the athletes who play them. With the OneTeam Collective, the goal is to build on that appeal to nurture and grow businesses that will be beneficial to all.”
The OneTeam Collective will consider business ventures and product ideas related to fan engagement, data analytics, performance and training, mobile fitness, sports nutrition, consumer products, fantasy sports, gaming, wearable technology, new media, as well as virtual and augmented reality.
The OneTeam Collective will be the first program providing rights to sports-related intellectual property, highlighted by the NFLPA’s exclusive group licensing rights and unparalleled access to more than 2,000 current NFL players.
The well-rounded founding portfolio will consist of KPCB and Madrona Venture Group providing consulting services and potential funding; Harvard Innovation Lab providing access to a campus environment focused on entrepreneurship for student-led events and competitions, such as hackathons; and Intel providing valuable input from a global innovative leader, as well as potential funding. LeadDog Marketing Group–an award-winning integrated, experiential marketing agency–will provide sports marketing and strategic planning resources. The Sports Innovation Lab will provide additional support to the OneTeam Collective and its portfolio companies.
Another unique element of the OneTeam Collective is its Athlete Advisory Board. These individuals will engage with founding partners and provide strategic input on portfolio companies and new prospects. Athletes will benefit by having the ability to directly interact with founding partners and portfolio companies, in order to establish a professional network, while also exploring business and career opportunities. The inaugural members of the board will consist of both active and former NFL players, including Kelvin Beachum, Mark Herzlich, Dhani Jones, Isaiah Kacyvenski, Ryan Nece, and Russell Okung.
“Players, both past and present, have so much to offer – but never in a way like this,” said former NFL Player and current Managing Partner of Qey Capital and Investor on CNBC’s Adventure Capitalist Dhani Jones. “The OneTeam Collective is going to help develop and promote concepts and products that were previously just left to survive on their own. With this accelerator in place, and with players helping power it, companies can get off the ground and into people’s lives. It’s a great feeling to be involved in something of this magnitude.”
The OneTeam Collective is planning a number of events and competitions in the coming months, beginning with a presence at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The program will host its first Pitch Day for a limited number of companies identified by its founding partners in Houston in February 2017. The event will include participation from founding partners, athletes and others within the sports, technology, and investor communities. Additional events will be held at the Harvard Innovation Labs that bring together thought leaders, innovative startups, and students to collaborate on new ideas and ventures.
Prospective companies can apply to participate and submit their application at www.oneteamcollective.com.
About the NFL Players Association
The National Football League Players Association is the union for professional football players in the National Football League. Established in 1956, the NFLPA has a long history of assuring proper recognition and representation of players’ interests. The NFLPA has shown that it will do whatever is necessary to assure that the rights of players are protected—including ceasing to be a union, if necessary, as it did in 1989. In 1993, the NFLPA again was officially recognized as the union representing the players, and negotiated a landmark Collective Bargaining Agreement with the NFL. The current CBA will govern the sport through 2020.
About NFL Players Inc.
NFL Players Inc., the licensing and marketing arm of the NFLPA, connects businesses to the power of NFL players. NFL Players Inc. creates customized business solutions for partners, through licensing, marketing strategy and player activations. For more information, please visit nflpa.com/players.
About the Harvard Innovation Lab
Launched in November 2011, the Harvard Innovation Lab (i-lab) is a resource for any student at Harvard interested in entrepreneurship and innovation. Our programming is designed to help students grow their ventures at any stage of development and covers a wide range of disciplines.
About Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) partners with the brightest entrepreneurs to turn disruptive ideas into world-changing businesses. The firm has helped build pioneering companies like Amazon, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Google, Nest, Netscape, and Twitter. KPCB offers entrepreneurs years of operating experience, puts them at the center of a vast and influential network, and accelerates their success through expertise and support in recruiting, product design and delivery, business development, strategic partnerships, and brand building. KPCB invests in all stages from seed and incubation to growth companies and operates from offices in Menlo Park, San Francisco, Shanghai, and Beijing. For more information, visit https://www.kpcb.comand follow us @kpcb.
About LeadDog Marketing Group
Recognized as the “2016 Best in Sports Event and Experiential Marketing” by SportsBusiness Journal, LeadDog Marketing Group creates, markets and activates one-of-a-kind brand and consumer experiences. Our team of passionate, make-it-happen people takes a full-service approach to integrated, experiential marketing, providing services including event conception and activation, sponsorship consulting, partnership negotiation, design and branding, strategic communications, brand promotions, digital and social media strategy. Part of CSM, a global leader in sport and entertainment, LeadDog delivers award-winning campaigns for partners in the sports, media/entertainment, active lifestyle, cause, technology and food/beverage industries. LeadDog is headquartered in New York City with satellite offices in Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco and Washington D.C. To unleash your potential, please visit: www.leaddogmarketing.com.
About Madrona Venture Group
Since 1995, Madrona Venture Group has helped technology entrepreneurs launch and grow world-class companies. The heart and soul of what we do is act as strategic board members and advisors on everything from helping to define business strategy, hiring the best team, to connecting you with the right customers and partners, to advising on key financial decisions and, ultimately, on the IPO and M&A processes. We’ve seen it all and bring decades of experience to the table. You won’t find a more committed group of people working on your behalf.
About The Sports Innovation Lab
The Sports Innovation Lab evaluates and identifies the technology products and services that will power the future of sports. The Boston-based, market research and advisory firm uses data analysis to reveal compelling stories that mobilize global partnerships among startups, investment capital firms, and corporate influencers. The Sports Lab derives insights from a world-class network of international advisors across a wide range of industries and through strong partnerships with leading universities. With a deep focus on the ever-changing world of sports technology and innovation, the Sports Lab showcases what is possible today so its clients move with clarity and confidence into the future. The Sports Lab officially launches January, 2017. Please visit us at www.sportsilab.com