Sports Tech Industry CEO Markos Kern discusses 'Fun With Balls GmbH'

Hi Markos Kern (CEO Fun With Balls GmbH), thank you for taking time out of your day to speak with us.  Tell us a little about yourself and about how ‘Fun With Balls GmbH’ came into your life?

It’s a pleasure, thanks for having me.

The way it all started was that I looked at all the sports tech out there, realizing that a large majority was missing the point. I’ve always been (hyper)active myself but also always struggled to overcome laziness and get up to do sports. From that side the biggest change for technology in sports is not to analyze, track or enhance sports. Much more we believe that tech should make sport interesting for people, so much so that they actually want to get started instead of catering to the existing players of a sport. Looking around we did not find many super fun ways to get started in sport and solve the participation problem, so we created it ourselves.

Thanks Markos.  As far as I understand you have 2 main products – multiBALL and interactiveSQUASH…  Can you tell us about these?

We started with our first product in squash, basically since it’s one of the most undervalued sports that is struggling immensely from having neglected the importance of being attractive to younger generations. We achieved great momentum and results there and the numbers from the centres and events we work with are very promising while making the sport highly attractive again.

About two months ago we started our first mainstream product multiBALL. It’s basically a touch enabled,  interactive sports wall that can be installed on any wall in schools, kindergartens, hotels, etc. As an entry product it comes at a much lower price tag, is a super way to set up and is a highly reliable tech that needs no explanation or knowledge. It is also highly additive and will make you sweat! 

With our traction and the new product we are now preparing to launch with multiple solutions based on our tech and IP, it seems that finally the media and big players are starting to understand our larger plan. 

Since SportsProsConnect background is in tennis, was wondering how you aim to help tennis players with multiBALL?

With our systems we have multiple layers of integration in sports. While multiBALL is the entry level – throw balls and get active-, our solution in tennis is a smart training wall that enables you to play a variety of games up to training your movement and performance for professional training. Catering to both sides is very important for us since training might be the daily business of Tennis facilities, but getting new players and other audiences in with fun and motivating tennis activities is what drives future revenues and growth. 

Who is your main target audience for Fun With Balls GmbH and where is your focal point for sales?

In the sports we are in we try to cover the whole spectrum from the kid that wants to have fun and is hopefully finding an easy intro into sports, over the amateur that might need more motivation, to the pro optimizing his training.

For us as a B2B company it all comes to the facilities of course. Only if we can provide great tech and highly feasible business models for them can we create sustainable growth in different sports. 

You have won several innovation awards in sports technology over the last few years.  Can you tell us about these and what has been your most prestigious award so far?

I think any of them are a great way of knowing we are on the right path. The Global Tennis Innovation Award is definitely one of my highlights since it shows that even the bigger sports are slowly becoming aware of the massive issue of declining participation.

Also squash has always been looking up to tennis a lot, so it was really rewarding to have tennis award a company that started in squash as the right way to move forward.

Finally, what else can we expect to see from Fun With Balls GmbH in the next 5 years?

As it looks now, there’s already plenty to expect in the next year. We’re rapidly growing our team and we’re about to launch new products in the next months ahead. Our tennis product is ready and we’re in the last steps of planning the launch. 

Apart from that we’ve just launched www.limbicactive.com and sports activation/ event based branch that delivers engaging experiences with our tech like the Peugeot “King of the Court” challenge during the ATP event in Rotterdam.

Thank you very much Markos Kern for taking time out of your busy day to speak with us today.  We found this interview extremely interesting and wish you the best of luck in your new launch.  If you would like to find out more about any of the information in this interview, please send any enquiries via email to mail@funwithballs.com, visit the SportsProsConnect Page or visit multiBALL direct.

Mark Wylam (Owner Sportsprosconnect.com)


March 15, 2019 Categories: Interviews