Millions of dollars for some; billions of dollars for others. These are the types of losses that different sports organizations are looking at because of the prolonged impact the coronavirus will have on their businesses. It’s going to take several years for anyone to see a full recovery, and that might not even be possible if the problem isn’t brought under control soon. The NBA and the NHL may have been able to complete their seasons in a bubble, but that isn’t possible for all sports everywhere, all the time. The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), the governing body of tennis in the U.K., is hoping it can fast track its recovery by offering a number of new solutions that might ultimately make their way to other sports organizations, as well. It is calling on Deloitte to deliver an Ace.
The LTA has turned to the multinational, multidimensional firm to help it increase engagement and interest in tennis through a number of digital solutions. The initiatives are designed to encourage greater participation in the sport, as well as introduce programs to enhance the user experience, such as personalized data on facilities, upcoming events and more. Deloitte will also establish a development program for accredited coaches in the LTA who want to increase their business education and further their accreditation.
LTA Head of Strategy and Innovation Chris Pollard says, “We are excited to announce this collaboration with Deloitte and will work with them to boost engagement with tennis through new technologies, learning from their expertise in digital transformation. For too long, tennis participation numbers have suffered as a result of how difficult it can be to find a court, a coach or someone to play with. Through the launch of these new digital tools, we aim to make booking a tennis court as simple as ordering a takeaway.”
All of the initiatives the collaborative effort looks to introduce are applicable to all sports groups, not just tennis. Deloitte will assist with improvements to the LTA’s website and create new web pages to focus on inclusivity. The ultimate goal, in addition to increasing the popularity of tennis, is to make the LTA more well-rounded and help it achieve a higher level of status as a trendsetting sports organization.
Adds Deloitte’s Tim Bridge, a director in the company’s Sports Business Group, “Encouraging a new generation to the tennis court will require more support of clubs, businesses and players themselves to make the most of new technologies available. Working closely with the LTA, we can ensure that new technologies are developed using insight and expertise on the wants, needs and aspirations of the tennis community in mind, boosting adoption and ensuring these tools support the growth of the sport for decades to come.”
Hopefully, as part of their wide-ranging project, the LTA and Deloitte can figure out how to remove a thorn that continues to infect the global tennis ecosystem. That of repeated match-fixing.