True to their name, Infinite Athlete are open to an infinitely long partnership with Chelsea in the wake of the one-year (at least) £40-43m shirt sponsorship that was finally approved just last week by the Premier League.
Company CEO Charlie Ebersol, who’s had a business relationship with Boehly and Eghbali prior to this already, sees the Chelsea partnership as their way into actual football after establishing a strong data and analytics footprint with Tempus Ex in the NFL and college football in the United States. Infinite Athlete were formed by the merger (financial as well as functional) of Tempus Ex and Biocore, a biomechanical analysis company.
“I wanted to use our partnership with Chelsea to build an expanded footprint in football. We had this idea about doing a one-year front-of-shirt deal. They discussed a longer deal about really building this out in a comprehensive package with all these different assets we will do with them over many years.
“We presented it to the Premier League as a unique deal. We are not just a traditional front-of-shirt sponsor in that we are doing social media tooling and other product stuff for the club.
“So we have our seven-year partnership with Tempus Ex and another multi-year partnership around sponsorship, then other assets we do over the next years. Frankly, we are open to doing a never-ending and larger partnership with Chelsea [and] it is the first time as far as I am aware, when a front-of-shirt partner is really integrated into the team. They are using us on social media, broadcast, fan engagement, player performance and health and safety.”
-Charlie Ebersol; source: Evening Standard
This “uniqueness” is possibly one of the reasons Premier League approval took so long to get for this deal, which apparently is a “multi-year partnership”, however long that might actually be.
As Ebersol mentions, Chelsea already had a long-term partnership with Tempus Ex (who built the new matchday streaming experience on the Chelsea 5th Stand App), which I’m sure also complicated things for the league’s beancounters. This agreement seems to be separate from the sponsorship agreement itself.
But if this Biocore biomechanical AI-learning fancy stuff does actually help drive our injury rate, then this partnership will have been worth it already!