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AI video tech provider WSC Sports raises $23m

Israel-based WSC Sports, a provider of artificial intelligence-supported sports video highlights, has raised $23m (£18.9m/€20.5m) in Series C funding, the latest marker in the company’s continued growth.

The OG Tech Partners investment vehicle of businessman Eyal Ofer led the funding round for the company, which has a client portfolio that includes the German Bundesliga, NBA, US Open, PGA Tour, Major League Soccer, Discovery, Warner Media, Cricket Australia and the International Basketball Federation (Fiba). OG Tech’s managing director, Roy Oron, will join the company’s board of directors.

Another new investor was HBSE Ventures – the venture capital arm of Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, which owns the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers basketball franchise, the New Jersey Devils NHL ice hockey team and Crystal Palace, which competes in the English Premier League, among other sports properties.

NTT Docomo Ventures, Maor Investments, ISF and Go4it Capital also participated in the round, with the funds raised set to be used to “further expand WSC’s growth across new sports, products and geographic regions”, the company said.

Existing investors also joined the funding round, including Intel Capital, Detroit Venture Partners, Elysian Park Ventures, 2BAngels, iAngels and Wise Ventures, which is controlled by the owners of the Minnesota Vikings NFL American football franchise.

WSC’s technology personalises and automates sports video content in near real-time.

The company uses an algorithm that monitors an audio feed from an event to capture key highlights automatically. The clips are then created and available to use across digital platforms.

WSC said that it has doubled its customer base and revenue year-on-year over the past three years and grown to 100 employees worldwide, with offices in New York and Sydney.

In June, former NBA commissioner David Stern and John Kosner, ESPN’s former vice-president of digital media, joined WSC as advisers.

Daniel Shichman, WSC Sports chief executive and co-founder, said: “I am confident this new round of funding will help us to continue to grow and impact the way sports media rights owners provide the best experience to fans.”