ASICS calls on startups to join new programme

04 May 2018

By: Sport Industry Group

ASICS has announced the official call for applications of its TENKAN-TEN Growth Catalyst – a start-up acceleration programme for the sports and well-being sector with a focus on sustainable growth.

With the launch of the call for applications that will remain open until 30th of June, ASICS is looking for initiatives that fit under the scope of the brand´s ‘Anima Sana In Corpore Sano’ philosophy (A Sound Mind in a Sound Body) to support, engage and cultivate.

Accelerated start-ups will encompass different fields from digital platforms and wearables; sports & wellness and training & health to new materials and new forms of consumer interaction.

The aim of the programme is to find opportunities which can help ASICS to encourage the world to move in line with its ‘I MOVE ME’ brand campaign, to empower personal movement through sport and well-being.

The ASICS TENKAN-TEN Growth Catalyst offers the acceleration to start-ups that have already passed the MVP phase, market validation and have certain traction.

Kicking off a four-month programme in mid-September, and finishing in January 2019 with a demo tour, which passes through cities; Berlin, Paris, London and Barcelona.

Being part of the TENKAN-TEN initiative selected start-ups will have direct access to C-level executives offering them mentorship during, but also after the duration of the programme.

The companies joining the programme will receive €30,000 in financial support in benefit of their project, access to a global network of retail distribution and a wide range of high level executives, industry experts, venture capitalists, founders and media contacts. Alongside this all applicants will also have access to a complementary wellbeing services including personal trainer sessions and nutrition plans.

As of January, the start-ups will join the ASICS Alumni Membership Programme which then continues supporting their growth thanks to the ASICS partnerships with ACCIÓ, RCD, Barcelona Tech City and the Global Sports Innovation Centre powered by Microsoft.

Alistair Cameron (CEO of ASICS EMEA), Carsten Unbehaun (CEO of Haglöfs) and Dan Smith (president and GM of ASICS Digital and formerly CEO & COO of Runkeeper), along with a diverse list of high ranking executives, will work with entrepreneurs.

Emilio Risques, VP of new business and innovation of ASICS EMEA, said: "In the growth phase the team is very important and therefore, we will put a lot of focus on helping the start-ups in this area where we have a great expertise.

"Our mission is to get the world moving by offering the highest quality products and services. Sport, wellbeing and health are very important pieces to achieve it.”

Daniel Dümig, new business and innovation manager of ASICS EMEA and person in charge of the TENKAN-TEN program, adds: “By uniting the speed, creativity and ambition of start-ups with the knowledge, resources and connections of ASICS, we can create a sustainable business for both sides in the long term. In this sense

the TENKAN-TEN approach perfectly combines the creative spirit and drive of external innovators with the scale and expertise of ASICS.”

ASICS Ventures, the global investment subsidiary which recently invested in the start-up Ai Silk Corporation, is working very closely with the project in order to pursue future innovations and business opportunities for ASICS.