an example of tech

Global sports tech start-ups to pitch ideas to Loughborough Sport leaders

  • Innovators will make their case for working with world’s leading university for sport
  • Applications for contest come from as far afield as India and the US
  • Final six to appear before panel in March - as well as live online audience

Six sports tech innovation start-ups will pitch to a panel of Loughborough Sport decision-makers after being shortlisted following a global search.

Loughborough University’s business incubator has identified 19 initial applications from businesses, each less than three years old, which are gaining traction in their sector and have some sort of prototype to showcase.

The LU Inc. long-list will now go to university leaders as the applicants are whittled down to a final six.

Loughborough University has an unrivalled sport technology and an innovation ecosystem with global reach.  

Across its East Midlands and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London campuses, the University brings together world class gyms, pitches, governing bodies, local authority sport partnerships and some of the greatest sport tech and expertise on the planet. 

Loughborough Sport works with Olympians, Paralympians, boxers, footballers, cyclists, runners from elite sport to mass participation. It has hosted camps for Team GB, Premier League clubs, world champions among many others.

LU Inc. is the University’s incubator for graduates, academic spinouts and external founders with innovative ideas.

It is based on the Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park (LUSEP) site and forms part of Loughborough Enterprise Network.

LU Inc. supports new ideas and innovations originating from the University and beyond. It is now extending its work with award-winning university start-ups and local SMEs into the sports tech sector. 

Pete Hitchings, Incubator Manager, said:

“This is the first time that we have organised a pitching event purely for sports tech businesses and there has been a good response.

“Pitch decks have come in from as far afield as India and the United States. We are now working with colleagues in Loughborough Sport to narrow down to the final half-dozen who will go before the panel.”

Panellists will include leaders from LU Inc. and the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Sports Development Centre, Sport Technology Institute and Institute for Sport Business.

Entrepreneurs will have time to deliver a short pitch to sell their idea to the panel. It will be followed by a Q&A as start-ups gain feedback on their business plan.

Entrants might be working in areas including exercise, health & wellbeing, sports facilities of the future, materials, accessibility, or participation.

The winner will be offered a free 12-month membership of LU Inc., with selected founders invited to join its Sport Tech workshop series later in 2022.

LU Inc. works with founders as they start, scale and grow sports tech businesses. Anyone can register to watch the March 2 pitch event live at

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 22/32

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2021 QS World University Rankings and University of the Year for Sport by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2022, and 10th in both the Guardian University League Table 2022 and the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.