30 Oct 2018

By: Sport Industry Group

The San Francisco 49ers and SAP have extended their partnership to transform the way that professional sports organisations use data and analytics to enhance the in-venue sports and entertainment experience. 

The latest co-innovation project from the long-time partners is a first-of-its-kind venue management solution called ‘Executive Huddle’. 

Powered by SAP Leonardo and Analytics, Executive Huddle provides the 49ers’ business strategy and analytics team with real-time data and visualisations spanning multiple data sources, to track, sense and respond in-the-moment to optimise operations and enhance the fan experience during games.

Housed in a suite overlooking the field at Levi’s Stadium, and accessible via mobile devices, Executive Huddle pulls real-time data from nine different sources, including attendance, parking, food and beverage, retail, ticketing, social media and more. 

Data visualisations are displayed on interactive screens, allowing team officials to identify an issue or opportunity, act on it, and see immediate results across venue operations and the fan experience. 

Using Executive Huddle, team management can identify specific areas of the stadium, as well as benchmark real-time data against past games and seasons for a more contextual view of their operations.

“Around the world, SAP is helping professional sports teams and venues simplify their business operations to become more efficient, profitable and successful,” said Mike Flannagan, senior vice president, SAP Leonardo and Analytics.

“Executive Huddle represents a transformative shift in the way that real-time data can be utilised by teams and venues to create value and impact in the moment. 

“For the first time, the 49ers are able to access real-time data and insights and call audibles during games to optimise their operations while ensuring higher fan satisfaction at the stadium.”

Following testing during the pre-season, Executive Huddle has been fully operational for all home games since the start of the regular season and is already delivering results. 

For example, examining ticket data has allowed the 49ers to see how fans are entering the stadium, and subsequently decrease waiting times by working with staff on the ground to direct fans to the appropriate gates.

 “It takes a lot of coordination to operate a 1.85M square foot building that, on game days, employs over 3,500 individuals, many of whom are temporary part-time or seasonal workers,” said Jim Mercurio, 49ers vice president of stadium operations and Levi’s Stadium general manager. 

“We leverage multiple platforms to manage parking and traffic solutions for over 15,000 cars, entry and egress through hundreds of access points for 70,000 fans, and concessions and retail stands with 600-plus points of sale, among other critical services. 

“Having a single resource to aggregate all those data points is a valuable asset to our commitment to ensure all Levi’s Stadium guests have a great experience.”