Interview with the three drivers of SportsInnovation 2022

In this interview Andreas Heyden, Michael Brill and Christopher Lemm talk about the future of sports business and what role SportsInnovation 2022 will play in it.

Mr. Brill why does it make sense to hold the SportsInnovation 2022 at the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA?

Michael Brill: Düsseldorf is regarded in Germany as a pioneer for the “360-degree” integration of sports in everyday society – from simple grassroots sports programmes to world-class top-level sport. High-class league games of the Düsseldorf clubs, internationally relevant major events, comprehensive athlete promotion and the business component of sport all have their place here. The sports innovation pairs these aspects with the pioneers of the industry who present their innovations live at our event. The MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA is a state-of-the-art multifunctional arena – connected to the Arena-Sportpark with the most modern competition and training facilities.

Mr. Heyden the fair takes place in a football stadium, the DFL is one of the organisers – is it also worthwhile for stakeholders from other sports to visit SportsInnovation 2022?

Andreas Heyden: Due to its great popularity and media reach, football plays a prominent role when it comes to developing and testing innovations. The best of these innovations, that convince media partners, fans and clubs, reach market maturity and thus become relevant for other fields of application beyond football. SportsInnovation accordingly offers a unique and international platform to experience the future of the entire sport.

What opportunities will be offered to exhibitors at SportsInnovation 2022 to present themselves Mr. Lemm?

Christopher Lemm: SportsInnovation offers exhibitors various forms of integration to present themselves at the fair. Basically, our exhibitor packages include all aspects that promise a successful trade fair: Exhibition space, branding & activation, networking & lead generation as well as different ticket contingents. In addition, SportsInnovation offers a multitude of new marketing opportunities for exhibitors, through which partnerships can be staged and activated in advance and during the event.

Mr. Brill which innovation topics would you say will point the way for the venue infrastructure in the next few years?

Michael Brill: The Corona pandemic has taught us that the digital by-products of sport can quickly become the core product. Through 5G technology, augmented and virtual reality applications will be formative for the next few years, where sports consumption will become more digital, personalised and interactive. Second-screen consumption on mobile devices in the stadium and at home will increase and offers exciting potential for the industry, which will be presented and further developed at SportsInnovation.

Mr. Heyden in which areas do you expect the innovations that will shape sport the most in the next 10 years?

Andreas Heyden: The most important future trends, on which we focus our development work, are the personalisation of content, the convergence of match data and media product as well as the linking of the real world with virtual reality – keyword “Extended Reality”. We presented many use cases and ideas for the future at the Supercup 2021 – an update will be available at SportsInnovation 2022.

Mr. Lemm can you tell us for whom is a visitor ticket at the SportsInnovation useful?

Christopher Lemm: SportsInnovation 2022 will bring the future of sports to life. The question is: How do we practice and consume the sports of the future? From this question, different dimensions and target groups can be derived, which we want to address at SportInnovation 2022. On the one hand, these are industry representatives, such as broadcasting companies, technology providers, sports marketing agencies, media partners, content partners as well as league and club representatives. On the other hand, SportsInnovation 2022 is also aimed at journalists from the sports and technology industry, association representatives from a wide range of sports and people from politics, who are part of the event’s extended target group. The broad field of innovations in sport makes it possible to also address different target groups from the large sports family. For all these people, we want to make an offer at SportInnovation to experience the sport of the future.

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