Excel Sports Management, the New York-based sports agency and management company, has acquired Block Six Analytics, the sponsorship technology and analytics firm.
The agency will now leverage Block Six’s platforms, which use AI and machine learning to calculate sponsorship valuation.
Excel will also use the firm’s technology across its multiple verticals including its sports properties and talent businesses.
The two parties have worked together over the past year on brand marketing projects.
Block Six’s analytics has helped Excel to better assess sponsorship value beyond impressions or exposure.
The Chicago-based firm’s computer vision software can scan broadcasts to measure the on-screen placement and prominence of logos and individuals.
The company also provides data on social media impressions and audience engagement.
Block Six will now move to a new office in Chicago under the Excel umbrella and its founder Adam Grossman will become the agency’s new vice-president of business insights and analytics.
David Falk, the long-time agent of former NBA superstar Michael Jordan, and Chuck Baker, who represented David Tepper in his purchase of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and MLS expansion team Charlotte FC, are among those on Block Six’s advisory board.
Stadia Ventures, the sports-focused venture firm, The Players’ Impact, the venture platform for professional athletes and former NFL player Matt Hasselbeck are among the investors in Block Six, which has raised $4 million in overall funding.
The analytics company has worked with the likes of soft drinks giant Pepsi, the NFL’s Detroit Lions, and the University of Wisconsin.
Excel represents athletes such as the NBA’s Kevin Love and Blake Griffin, the PGA Tour’s Justin Thomas, as well as esports properties such as the Overwatch League and Call of Duty League.
Emilio Collins, Excel’s chief business officer, said: “This acquisition is a natural evolution of the work we have been doing with Block Six for quite some time.
“We look forward to further integrating [Block Six] across our brand and properties businesses, as well as for sports performance talent analytics.”
Grossman added: “The industry is moving towards understanding data, generating insights, and making those actionable for clients. Excel operates multiple different verticals – talent, brands properties etc. – and data is a big component for each.
“Combining Excel’s current capabilities with the ability to layer on data, insights, analytics and machine learning will only further grow those verticals and provide direct impact to clients.”