The round is led by Asian VC, FengHe Group, and will be used to build on current traction throughout EMEA into a global expansion of the PlayerMaker technology, with focus on the American and Asian markets
TEL AVIV, Israel, Dec. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- PlayerMaker, the leading international football athlete performance analysis company, today announces a $10 million Series B round, led by FengHe Group. Using players' footwear as the technological infrastructure to attach sensors, PlayerMaker's device tracks and analyses athletes' motion against the world's largest database of football movements in the world, forming a new category of 'augmented wearables'. Using AI and machine learning, PlayerMaker provides the most reliable and scalable solution ever presented to athletes and coaches, focusing first on football. The data generated improves coaches' decision-making processes, especially in relation to player performance optimization, talent identification and injury prevention.
Following its launch last year, PlayerMaker has seen substantial international growth across academy, college, semi-professional, and elite level teams. Now active in more than 10 countries and used by clubs such as Fulham, Millwall, Manchester City, Norwich City, Crystal Palace, Hull City, Club America, Toronto FC, Atlanta United, and Argentina's Olympic national team, this injection of funds will fuel team growth in PlayerMaker's key hubs across EMEA, the United States and Asia. In May, PlayerMaker was joined by Arsène Wenger, who became an investor and operating partner following a first-hand observation of the system in action. Speaking about the system he said, "I believe that PlayerMaker is the best available solution to measure performance."
This is underscored today, with FengHe's investment representing one of the largest funding rounds for a football related performance tool. The utilization of PlayerMaker's cutting-edge solution is saving elite level teams millions of dollars every year in costly rehabilitation time, with star players having actionable insights into the strain they are putting on lower limbs. Following matches and training, the data gleaned from the sensors is processed by PlayerMaker's proprietary algorithm and then presented as insights on a dashboard for players, coaches and managers to track and examine tactical, technical and physical player performance, often leading to the optimization of training exercises for individual players.
FengHe's Founding Partner and Chairman, John Wu, has been at the forefront of technology for over three decades as the Chief Architect of Yahoo! in the 1990s and as the angel investor and first CTO of Alibaba in the 2000s. He was also named China's Angel Investor of the Year in 2014. Commenting on the sports technology company's success, Mr. Wu said "The potential growth in front of PlayerMaker is substantial. We have been impressed by the company's traction across the world, as well as the wide-ranging partnership opportunities in their pipeline."
PlayerMaker CEO and Co-founder, Guy Aharon, said, "This investment will enhance our ability to deliver further at scale for our international customers across Europe, Asia and the Americas without compromising the high quality of service that our customers have come to expect. FengHe have understood our mission to enhance the quality of football worldwide from the beginning and have shown consistently that they are as keen to be a part of the journey. I am proud to lead a team that is committed to helping all players become champions. We are starting with football, but it's just a first step – our goal is to improve all athletes' performance though smart, connected footwear regardless of where they are in the world."
PlayerMaker is a players' performance platform, using motion sensors that are mounted on the players' boots. Using AI algorithms, their device tracks and analyzes all technical, tactical, biomechanical and physical movement on and off the ball, giving managers, coaches and players a granular understanding of their performance. Used by hundreds of teams worldwide, from elite to recreational, the PlayerMaker device delivers a competitive advantage to some of the most forward-thinking teams. To find out more, visit www.playermaker.com.
Founded in 2010 by John Wu and Matt Hu, FengHe Group is a leading Asian investment group specializing in venture capital and hedge funds. FengHe's venture capital team focuses on investing in opportunities that would benefit from Asia's growing market for innovative technologies. The Group's hedge fund, FengHe Asia, is also a multi-year award winning fund recognized by the industry. To find out more, visit www.fenghegroup.com.