Original+, a product for the mass custom manufacturing of alpine skis, has been announced as the overall winner of Ispo Brandnew 2019, the international platform and competition for start-ups in the sports industry. The jury of experts chose one overall winner as well as one winner each in the following categories: accessories, apparel, fitness, hardware summer, hardware winter and wearables. The 2019 winners were selected from more than 400 submissions. The jury of the Ispo Brandnew award is made up of past winners as well as representatives of the sports sector, who carefully examine each competing product. Original+ had already won an Ispo Gold Medal Award for best snowsports product in 2018.
Original+ features a proprietary Artificial Intelligence technology, which interprets the biometric data of the skier – such as weight and height. These data are combined with information about the skiing style of the athlete and the preferred area of use, and the collected information is then translated into an individual, tailor-made set of skis. If realized at competitive prices, mass customization could significantly boost the ski market, the jury said.
In the Accessories category, the 2019 winner is Bluebird Mountain from Germany for its PowderBee, a drone which can shorten the search for avalanche victims. The PowderBee is light (600g) and compact, and can fit in a backpack. As the PowderBee detects a signal, it transmits a visual and acoustic notification to the rescuers, who can begin operations without delay.
Hero Water Wear from Australia is the winner in the Apparel category. Hero Water Wear combines a shirt suitable for water sports with a life-saving function. In case of emergency, the integrated carbon dioxide cartridge is activated via a ripcord, which then inflates air chambers in the shirt's chest and shoulder areas. The Hero Water Wear also features an integrated SPF 50 protection against sunburn. The shirt is made of a blend of 80 percent polyester and 20 percent Lycra with flat seams and a double lining.
In the Fitness category, the winner is YoRoller from Austria. YoRoller is a portable fitness station for training indoors and outdoors, complete with an adapter that enables it to be mounted to poles, handrails or trees. The YoRoller works like a horizontal yo-yo that responds to the movement of the user. Training is purely dependent on the athlete's energy, which is used and converted. Additional weight is not needed.
Inobo from France is the winner in the Hardware Summer category. Inobo is a modular kiteboard that innovatively combines a carbon exoskeleton and an additional deck pad. The expanded deck module can be exchanged at the surfing spot based on the surfer's skill level and preferences. Split Ski from Poland won in the Winner Hardware category. The Split Ski is based on a simple and yet highly functional idea. A connector linking the two elements makes the skis foldable, so skiers can carry them more easily when traveling by plane, train or even by bike. The skis can indeed be transported in a backpack.
Finally, the winner of the Ispo Brandnew 2019 award in the Wearables category is diPulse from Sweden. diPulse integrates electrostimulation into functional clothing, to facilitate muscle training. Carbon-based control elements, attached to the clothing without wires or electrodes, enable targeted stimulation of particular muscle areas during training. In addition, an integrated virtual trainer can access the data in real time and provide the athlete with active feedback.
Ispo Brandnew has searched for and honored the most promising newcomers of the sports industry since the year 2000. Former award winners include GoPro, Naish Kites, and Maloja. The 2019 Ispo Brandnew prize winners and finalists will be on display at Ispo Munich 2019 in the Ispo Brandnew Village on Feb. 3-6, 2019. The application phase for Ispo Brandnew 2020 will start in mid-2019.