Bangalore-based sports tech startup that helps in booking sports infrastructure in the vicinity, Athletto, has raised an undisclosed amount in angel funding from industrialist Atul Ingle, who himself is an avid sports lover.
Atul said that he liked the team’s vision, passion and sector knowledge and their approach to woo customers that made him invest in the startup.
Athletto was started in 2015 by IIM-A alumni Ujwal Sutaria and Narayana Vyas, along with Praveen Gadpayle. The startup provides a cloud-based common web platform, mobile application and customised dashboard for all the sports enthusiasts ranging from players, aficionados, professionals, coaches, sports academy managers, tournament organizers, and others by giving access to all kind of sports related services like sports infrastructure booking, coaching, and tournaments. It gives details about each facility like photographs, timings, contact details, location, prices, ratings, reviews, coach information and more.
Ujwal and Vyas are themselves former national level tennis players which brought their interest to amalgamate sports and technology. Athletto started its journey with CIIE’s Young IIMAvericks Fellowship program, a program to support graduating students of IIM-A to take up the entrepreneurial path, and currently is receiving active mentoring support from CIIE. It had also been shortlisted for Y-Combinator’s S16 batch, where about less than 1% startups make it from around the world.
According to the founding team, contrary to the public notion that there is dearth of sports infra in India, the country has more than 2.5 lakhs of sports facilities spread across private, government, schools, colleges and residential complexes. Also, presently, the average occupancy rates of these infrastructure are at a dismal 10-15%. Hence, there is tremendous scope to improve it to 50-60%. With the newly raised capital, Athletto aims to focus on aggregating listings on their platform and digitise this completely unorganised sports sector, which is estimated at more than $50 Bn in Asia. It also plans to ramp up its operations in Bangalore and expand to other cities along with hiring talent, improving technology and customer experience.
Athletto, presently has verified more than 8000 sports facilities across eight cities for listing and partnered with more than 400 sports facilities across Bangalore for online booking. The startup claims that currently the platform is facilitating 200+ daily transactions and have already facilitated more than 40,000 transactions handling an amount of INR 1.5 Cr in less than 10 months.
Ujwal Sutaria, co-founder and CEO of Athletto said, “The best part of sports is the high repeat rates and customer loyalty, we see an avg. repeat rate of 65% giving a high CLV making it a profitable and self-sustainable business.”
Athletto also won an award at the India Sports Award organised by FICCI in Feb this year for their outstanding effort to promote sports among the masses using technology. The startup is also making inroads into the professional sporting scene in India through partnerships with Bengaluru Football Club(BFC), Gagan Narang’s Gun for Glory Shooting Academy, Vijay Amrtiraj’s Champions Tennis League team, Arsenal Soccer School, FCBescola and many others.
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