10 companies picked for Dodgers Accelerator program

10 companies picked for Dodgers Accelerator program

LOS ANGELES -- The first-ever Dodgers Accelerator program reached the second stage on Monday with the selection of 10 companies that will leverage the resources of the franchise, its owners and partners.

The program, in partnership with communications and advertising company R/GA, has selected fledgling companies dedicated to transforming sports, technology, entertainment and media. The companies will spend the next three months working to impact the sports and entertainment industry, not just the Dodgers and MLB.

The 10 companies selected for the program represent the diverse spectrum of sports technology and entertainment:

• Appetize -- point of service, mobile ordering and inventory management platform for live events.

• Doorstat -- helps businesses and brands better understand foot traffic, customer demographics and customer behavior through a proprietary technology solution.

• FieldLevel -- private social network for sports recruiting that connects coaches and helps college teams find the best athletes for their programs.

• FocusMotion -- complete solution that makes it easy to track and analyze movements, gestures and exercises with wearables.

• Kinduct -- develops connected health, fitness and human performance software solutions that help make people better.

• LeagueApps -- platform enabling local sports organizers to create and manage sports experiences.

• ProDay -- mobile app that lets anyone work out with professional athletes. Anytime. Anywhere.

• SidePrize -- facilitates side challenges for your fantasy league.

• Swish Analytics -- algorithm-driven tools for daily fantasy players and fans.

• Yezno -- social platform that allows sports fans to poll, engage and debate each other.

Tucker Kain, chief financial officer of the Dodgers and managing director of Guggenheim Baseball Management, said 600 applications were narrowed to the 10 selected. He said the universe of companies not only included expected first-stage startups with innovative ideas and visionary founders, but established category leaders that are rapidly scaling operations.
"All of the companies will benefit greatly from the network and expertise the L.A. Dodgers, and its ownership, can provide," Kain said. "It's a little bit of an array of businesses, and we're excited about it. Now we have the opportunity to dig in and understand what problems people are trying to solve, find great entrepreneurs and work with them." 

The program is designed to provide companies with opportunities for strategic business development, pilot programs, technology development and brand strategy customized for each of the participants. The Dodgers will provide the companies with a $20,000 investment in exchange for a 6 percent equity stake. The companies will be given office space and access to Dodgers owners Mark Walter, Magic Johnson, Todd Boehly, Bobby Patton and Peter Guber.

The companies will gain access to industry partnerships, mentors and distribution channels while developing successful business models, impactful customer experiences and enduring brands.

"This program is significantly different from any traditional accelerator. We are fortunate to be working with category leaders such as Appetize, FieldLevel, Kinduct and LeagueApps, which have already built successful businesses, raised significant rounds and achieved impressive valuations," said Stephen Plumlee, global chief operating officer, R/GA and managing partner of R/GA Ventures. "We are also excited to work with each of the emerging companies. With their input, we are innovating on the very idea of what an accelerator is and how a program can create value for companies at all stages."

The program will culminate in an invite-only demo day for industry leaders, partner organizations, investors and media at Dodger Stadium in early November 2015.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.