Genius moves into streaming with Oppia Performance purchase

Sports data and technology company Genius Sports has entered the field of video production with the launch of its GeniusLive end-to-end streaming and OTT platform.

The creation of the service follows the acquisition of Brussels-based streaming and performance analysis company Oppia Performance.

Genius said its new platform will enable leagues and federations to automate the video production of live sporting events. Using AI-powered algorithms, GeniusLive automatically tracks, pans and captures the live action, removing the need for expensive hardware as well as in-venue production and personnel.

GeniusLive is initially being targeted at basketball, volleyball and other indoor sports, with Genius Sports stating its global network of partners will be able to publish TV-quality live streams and highlights complete with integrated commentary, graphics and statistics to be distributed live, or on-demand, via their own OTT platform.

GeniusLive already works with a dozen leagues and federations, including the French Volleyball League (LNV), Belgium’s Euro Millions Volley League, the volleyball federations in the Czech Republic and Portugal, plus the Dutch Basketball League.

Combined with Genius Sports’ data collection and analytics tools, GeniusLive said that it will seek to deliver “advanced coaching insights, combining scouting data with integrated video to help coaches analyse and improve player performance, evaluate training sessions and enhance in-game decision making.”

Genius Sports’ rival Sportradar has long been involved in providing OTT and digital solutions for rights-holders, while IMG has increased its work in the space in recent years. Genius is now clearly looking to expand its business model, which until now has revolved around data and integrity partnerships.

Unlike the likes of Sportradar, IMG Arena and Stats Perform, Genius has also not been active to any significant extent in acquiring betting streaming rights.

Steven Burton, managing director of Genius Sports, said: “The launch of GeniusLive is an exciting and natural progression for Genius Sports, providing sports with high-quality, low-cost technology to produce, distribute and commercialise live and recorded video content. Our partners will be able to harness an unprecedented level of live video and statistics to transform the fan experience and generate new revenue.”

Anton Brams, former chief executive and founder of Oppia Performance, added: “As a former volleyball player and coach, Genius Sports’ commitment to making advanced digital technology available to all levels of sport made them stand out as an ideal buyer. Being tasked with rolling out our mobile technology to sports in over 150 countries as Genius Sports’ first strategic director of streaming and OTT is a hugely exciting opportunity.”

Genius Sports now claims that its data and statistics technology is used by over 80 per cent of professional volleyball leagues and federations. In July, Genius Sports also announced a long-term data and technology agreement with Fiba, basketball’s international federation.