Category: Marketing and advertising tech – Sports tech
Miro is an AI & Computer Vision startup using deep learning to unlock one-of-a-kind consumer insights from images & video. Miro’s RunnerTag AI has mapped over 7MM athletes in over 700 running, cycling & obstacle course events in Asia, EU & the USA. By simply analyzing a single photo or video frame, Miro’s AI can instantly identify athletes, discover 1:1 brand preferences & suggest training or gear to improve athletic performance.
What does Miro AI do?
We analyse sports imagery and videos using computer vision and machine learning. In each piece of media, we instantly identify the athletes, analyse their form, and extract their gear and brand preferences. We answer questions and solve problems for the biggest sports franchises in the world. This could be helping Nike to understand the shoe brand preferences among 25-34 year-old female athletes at the Boston Marathon or automatically identifying Boston Redsox players in photos to make it easier for the team to search their internal media library.
How did you/the founders come up with the idea?
With experience applying computer vision to our work at McDonald’s, a mutual friend presented a unique business challenge that he had within the running industry which he believed could be solved with computer vision. After pursuing this work on the side for a while, we realized that there was a much larger opportunity awaiting us and we quit our “day jobs” to pursue the startup dream.
Could you tell us a bit about you and your team?
With offices in the US and Hong Kong, Miro AI are a team of 11 product and data specialists. One of our unique advantages is a leadership team that has worked together previously to create similar technology solutions at a global scale for some of the largest companies in the world. As a team, we know how to align technology products with business needs, while handling massive scale and data privacy.
Jamie Wilde, co-founder and CTO, studied Computer Science at the University of Manchester and has worked in technology ever since. An accomplished technology leader, Jamie moved to Asia in 2006 and has had leadership roles as Technical Director of Notey in Hong Kong, and Director of Technology at The Marketing Store, Asia Pacific. As keen runner, Jamie can be found running the trails of Hong Kong, or competing in Marathons and road races around Asia. Jamie’s interest in Computer Vision and Machine Learning is realised as co-founder and CTO at Miro where he specialises in applying Computer Vision and AI solutions.
Hiro Noguchi, the Japan Country Manager, is an enthusiastic IT business development specialist who has vast experiences in sports technologies. After graduating from the University of Tokyo, Hiro has spent more than a quarter century working for global IT companies i.e. NEC and Cisco Systems. Specifically, Hiro led the digitization of Japanese sports venues as a business development manager of Cisco’s Sports & Entertainment Solution Group; bringing state-of-the-art fan engagement IT solutions to Japanese sports industry. Now Hiro is proud to be a member of the Miro AI team as the Japan country manager to revolutionize the Japanese sports industry though the application of innovative AI technologies. Showing great commitment Hiro has also started training himself for running a marathon race!
What are the other alternatives to Miro AI?
There are two primary alternatives to our products, the first is outsourced photo processing delivered with manual labor. The second is for someone to use off-the-shelf computer vision products, such as Google Vision, which is inadequate for the sports specific verticals that our products service. Ultimately, we provide the speed that a manual process can’t match, while providing the precision and depth that an off-the-shelf product is incapable of.
Who is your target customer?
We are a B2B company that enables sports related companies to create magical experiences for their customers. We work with photographers, event organizers, shoe/apparel brands, sports retailers, and digital asset management companies. Our best clients are those with access to large amounts of photographs/ videos.
How does your product make a difference to the industry?
Miro’s platform transforms the value equation for sports events, teams and brands. We unlock value in image data, provide a new and differentiated revenue stream for event organisers, and give brands access to unique athlete data.
What are the milestones for Miro AI?
Our RunnerTag product has powered the event experience for over 7 million participants across 700+ running, cycling, and triathlon events around the world. In 2020, Miro AI are extending our models across the industry. Miro AI are commencing a partnership with Major League Baseball in the US, using our technology to automatically annotate live game imagery in stadiums.
Why did you start targeting Japan?
Japan is the global #1 Marathon finisher market, and home to two market leading sports brands; both headquartered in Kansai.
Rainmaking Innovation Japan (RMIJ) is an entity owned and operated by the Rainmaking Innovation group in Japan. Currently RMIJ operates the Startupbootcamp Scale Osaka program with corporate partners Hankyu Corporation, JR West Innovations, Dentsu, The Yomiuri Shimbun, SMBC, JT Group and Sakura Internet.
Rainmaking’s purpose is to help individuals, companies and societies solve big challenges by unleashing the power of entrepreneurship. We utilise our team of experts, global network and local team on the ground to bring value to Japanese corporations.
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