Similar to many startup technology firms in Israel, the origins of WSC Sports can be traced back to a time when a group of ambitious engineers, having written algorithms for the country’s military, left the army with a desire to do something altogether different with their training.
Originally envisioning a coaching tool for basketball, and then a platform to give sports fans control of their viewing experience, university friends Daniel Shichman, Aviv Arnon, Shmulik Yoffe and Hy Gal went about developing their own automated solution for tailoring sports highlights to the user’s unique preference.
Founded in 2011, WSC Sports’ idea has since been adapted for 15 different sports and federations around the world. In October, the Tel Aviv-based company was selected to work with European soccer’s governing body Uefa as part of its startup programme, a clear indication that the world’s largest sports organisations are exploring ways to integrate cutting-edge technology into their content production and delivery processes.
“It was something that we originally built for the coaching space and the performance side,” recalls Arnon, who is now the company’s chief business development officer. “When we decided to look at whether this could be a sustainable business on its own, we tried to figure out how we could turn it into a scalable opportunity and what we could bring to the market that didn’t already exist.
“We started out with a lot of naive aspirations for what we could do, but later on we learnt how the market operates. At its core, the technology itself was built to give every fan what they want to see, and basically let the fan control what interests them. That’s when we began thinking about taking this to the fans.”