A new club for high-growth technology companies in the sport, entertainment and leisure sector
LONDON – Europe’s largest sports law practice, Northridge, today announced it has launched an innovative new club for the best high-growth technology companies that serve the sports, entertainment and leisure market. Northridge Track brings these cutting edge companies together with Northridge’s established client and contact base of teams, governing bodies, venue owners, agencies, sponsors and investors operating within that sector. It combines Northridge’s expert legal advice with broader non-legal support and access to the firm’s extensive network of market-leading clients and contacts to facilitate fundraising and new business relationships.
An alternative to the typical accelerator or incubator programme, Northridge Track provides on-going, premium support to high-potential technology companies to access key decision makers in the sector. Northridge has partnered with renowned industry adviser, Charlie Greenwood, to deliver Northridge Track. Greenwood, formerly of Nike and AEG, works with sports-focused VC funds and tech accelerator programmes in the US and UK, as well as advising selected high-growth tech companies in the sports and entertainment sector. He will provide strategic advice to club members. During the pilot phase, Northridge Track successfully worked with:
- SPORTLOGiQ: one of North America’s most exciting AI powered sports analytics companies, on its expansion into Europe following a successful Series B fundraise
- Funder: a tech company rethinking mass charitable fundraising through its platform delivering lotteries, raffles and games to the communities and fan bases of sports teams, celebrities and charities, including Chelsea FC, Help Refugees, the RFU and parkrun
- STATSports: the world’s leading provider of GPS tracking and performance software to professional sports teams
- Deuce: a technology company driving grassroots participation in tennis, in relation to Andy Murray's investment in the business
- AEG Worldwide: the global venue owner and sports and entertainment agency on commercial legal advice and introductions to new technology partners
Northridge founding partner Jon Walters explains: “The sports and entertainment industries are becoming increasingly driven by technology – on the pitch, in commercial deals and to engage with fans. Teams are turning to technology for competitive edge, broadcasters are looking for new ways to create content, marketing agencies are searching for innovative ways to activate and track sponsorships, participants are tracking their rides and runs, and rightsholders are seeking ever-greater insights into their fanbases.
“We recognise the challenges for high-potential technology companies seeking to stand out and grow within this competitive industry. We know how tough it can be to generate conversations with potential partners and customers, and to raise capital. Northridge Track has been designed to support the very best tech companies in this sector, built on an underlying proposition of first class legal advice.”
Created with an ambitious, entrepreneurial spirit that reflects the industry it serves, Northridge prides itself on an appetite for innovation. Northridge Track is one such example, combining:
- Industry-leading legal advice with a flexible approach to pricing to match the company’s growth curve
- Access to Northridge’s extensive network of athletes, teams, leagues, governing bodies, sponsors, agencies, investors and advisors
- Participation in Northridge’s range of events attended by industry executives and other club members.
Walters continues: “Northridge Track also allows us to give our established client base of industry leaders access to the inside track on some of the most exciting new companies out there. Often we are able to give these clients first sight of new entrants into the European market – typically North American businesses who are established players in the US major leagues or consumer market.”
There are no membership fees, long application forms or a formal pitch-style presentation to join the club. Membership is selective on an ongoing basis for the most ambitious businesses in the sector who share Northridge’s ethos of excelling “when the stakes are highest”.
“The greatest compliment I can pay the team at Northridge is that they aren’t like other lawyers. They understand our business and our industry. They don’t tell me the law, they tell me what to do.”
Alan Clarke, Co-Founder and CEO of STATSports.
“Northridge have provided invaluable support to Funder, both on our commercial negotiations and through introductions to their network. We view them as a genuine business partner, not just our lawyers.”
Cody Hoffman, Founder and CEO of Funder
Northridge is an independent law firm that focuses on the most complex and important matters in sport. Founded in October 2017, it has already established itself as the firm the sports industry turns to when the stakes are highest. It is ranked in Tier One for sports law in the Legal 500 and is Europe’s largest sports practice. Clients include:
- Major brands and agencies: Puma, Betway, IMG, AEG Worldwide, CSM, Roc Nation, KIN
- Sporting bodies: The Football Association, the British Horseracing Authority, World Rugby, the Welsh Rugby Union, Premiership Rugby, the Rugby Football League, Formula E, the Greyhound Board of Great Britain
- Football teams: Chelsea FC, AC Milan, Everton FC and Middlesbrough FC
- Individuals: Dele Alli, Raheem Sterling, Cesc Fabregas, Kevin De Bruyne, Thierry Henry
- Investors: Bessemer Venture Partners, Elliott, Dragoneer Investment Group, Farhad Moshiri
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT Kathryn Adamson, Kathryn@legalcomms.com, Mobile (+44) 0771 713 3595
NOTES TO EDITORS
Based in London, Northridge launched in October 2017 with founding partners Jonathan Ellis, Ian Lynam, Jon Walters and James Eighteen, the market-leading team that previously operated out of Charles Russell Speechlys. In just over a year it has already become the largest sports practice in Europe and has achieved a Tier One ranking in Legal 500.
The firm provides a broad range of services from disputes and regulatory to commercial and corporate. It advises on the most complex inquiries and investigations, “bet the company” acquisitions, the structuring of new formats and competitions, the highest value sponsorship deals and the most critical issues for superstar athletes. An enviable client base of businesses in the digital, gambling and leisure sectors and beyond moved with them alongside the core sports practice, and the firm attracted a raft of new major name clients in its first year of business.