Chosen from over 1,000 global applicants, Dibz is one of 10 startups selected for the inaugural Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator
Photo: Dibz founder, Brennon D’Souza
LONDON-BASED DIBZ, A real-time seat upgrade solution for event venues that have unsold seats, has been selected as one of 10 global startups for the first annual Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech Accelerator.
Founded by Brennon D’Souza, Dibz technology allows venue attendees to upgrade their existing seats, either right before the show starts or at intermission. Working via the simplicity of texting without the need to download an app, venue-goers text a number advertised in the lobby of the venue, specific to that show, and immediately receive a text back showing what seats are available to upgrade. If they are interested, they click and receive the new ticket on their phone.
The concept does not cannibalize existing sales at venues. Instead, it prompts people already there to spend a little more to upgrade their seat. Once they’ve done so, their original tickets go back into the hopper, as it were, for others to potentially buy. Upgraders pay the difference in the ticket prices; Dibz gets a percentage of that payment.
Chosen from over 1,000 applicants in 70 countries, D’Souza and the additional nine founders will bring innovative solutions to Comcast NBCUniversal and the SportsTech partner consortium, which includes NBC Sports, Sky Sports, Golf, NASCAR, U.S. Ski and Snowboard, USA Cycling, USA Swimming, and Comcast Ventures.
“Acceptance into the NBCUniversal Comcast SportsTech accelerator firstly means validation of my vision for seat upgrades everywhere, and secondly it means that Dibz will receive investment, support and resources from a media and entertainment powerhouse, with a tremendous reach in the marketplace,” says D’Souza.
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Startups were selected based on their technology solutions focused on the accelerator’s eight focus areas: media and entertainment, fan/player engagement, athlete/player performance, team and coach success, venue and event innovation, fantasy sports and betting, esports and the business of sports.
The 2021 program, which kicked off in late February and lasts 12 weeks, is being held virtually, with the founders participating in the immersive accelerator from around the globe.
The companies will engage in a custom curriculum featuring workshops on business elements such as fundraising, sales, marketing and branding, company culture and working with corporations, and will meet seasoned startup founders who will share their insights on building and selling highly successful businesses.
In the future, each company will have the opportunity to work at Comcast NBCUniversal’s Central Division Innovation Center in Atlanta at Truist Park, which overlooks the Atlanta Braves stadium.
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“At Comcast NBCUniversal, sports, entertainment and technology are central to what we do across our streaming, broadband and aggregation businesses. Our inaugural SportsTech accelerator brings together this focus with our long tradition of working with founders and startups,” notes Sam Schwartz, chief business development officer, Comcast Cable. “In collaboration with our partners who represent some of the strongest brands in sports, we are excited to mentor and learn from these founders and see how their technologies can drive innovation in the sports and entertainment industry.”
At the conclusion of the program, the companies will participate in a virtual demo day on May 26, 2021, and present their businesses before some of the world’s leading venture capitalists, startup founders, business executives and media.