SAP, City Football Group take 'the beautiful game' into the Cloud

New partnership powered by SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud to help CFG enhance operations

Tags: Cloud computingSAPUnited Arab Emirates
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SAP, City Football Group take 'the beautiful game' into the Cloud City Football Group will co-innovate with SAP on new technological enhancements in the areas of talent management, football performance and human performance.
By  David Ndichu Published  July 8, 2015

SAP SE and City Football Group (CFG) have announced a global, multiyear marketing and technology partnership that both organizations say will transform the way the ownership group and its football teams operate and perform, from the boardroom to the pitch.

SAP will become the official “Cloud Software Provider” and a technology advisor of City Football Group and its four clubs around the world, including Manchester City FC (Men and Women), New York City FC, Melbourne City FC and Yokohama F. Marinos. 

“City Football Group is one of the most innovative and technology-driven football organizations in the world,” said Bill McDermott, CEO and member of the Executive Board of SAP SE. “We are so proud that SAP HANA and our cloud solutions will be enabling City Football Group’s vision for supporting the players and coaches while completely reinventing the fan experience.”

City Football Group and its clubs will implement a wide variety of cloud-based solutions powered by the SAP HANA platform with the aim to simplify their world-wide operations, scale their business, increase productivity and enhance the fan experience. Another key element of the partnership will be the collaboration to co-innovate and develop new applications to analyse and improve performance on the field for players and coaches.

Khaldoon al Mubarak, Chairman of City Football Group, commented, “This partnership is as important as it is broad, stretching across all entities within the City Football Group. In SAP we have found a technology partner that is committed globally to our businesses and one that shares our constant drive for innovation. Our common ambition is to create ground-breaking football specific technology solutions and products and I have every confidence that we will be successful."

Business Operations

To further expand globally and improve operational efficiencies across all clubs, City Football Group will utilize cloud solutions from SAP, including SuccessFactors solutions, the SAP Jam social software platform and the SAP Simple Finance solution powered by SAP HANA, to enhance talent management and HR processes and drive more collaboration worldwide. Analytics solutions from SAP, including SAP Predictive Analytics software and SAP BusinessObjects business intelligence solutions, will be the centre of CFG’s new information infrastructure to put “information at your fingertips” in order to analyse and simulate all data from ticketing to merchandising to allow decision makers across the organization to make faster and more informed decisions.

Fan Engagement

A variety of SAP solutions will be leveraged to enhance the fan experience in CFG team stadiums around the world, including an interactive digital insights wall at the Etihad Stadium that will bring real-time analytics and insights to fans attending matches. SAP and CFG will change the way that fans of CFG teams access and consume football data, allowing them to look at the game differently and understand it in the most relevant way. To provide an even better experience for fans, CFG will use SAP solutions for customer engagement and commerce and customer experience management software from Hybris, an SAP company.

Player and Team Performance

Looking forward, City Football Group will co-innovate with SAP on new technological enhancements in the areas of talent management, football performance and human performance for future versions of the SAP Sports One Solution. As the first sports-specific cloud solution powered by the SAP HANA platform, SAP Sports One provides users with a single, unified platform to manage their individual teams and players efficiently, as well as analyse and contextualize data from different sources and in various formats for new insights for performance optimization.

The partnership with CFG builds on a growing portfolio of relationships throughout football around the world and continues SAP’s strategy of working with sporting organizations that showcase SAP technology. Last summer, SAP and the German National Team (DFB) co-innovated on the development of SAP Match Insights, using SAP HANA, which enabled the team to collect and analyse player data during training to help them secure their fourth World Cup Championship. Outside of football, SAP transforms sport by successfully collaborating with a number of well-known sports organizations and associations in ice hockey, sailing, golf, Formula 1 racing, cricket, American football, baseball, tennis and basketball.

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