The company Bornan Sports Technology, which won the contract to manage the accreditations and results information at the Tarragona 2018 Mediterranean Games, claims the experience of its staff, in which “the least has been in the sector for 16 years” to manage the sporting event.
Representatives of this sports technology company based in Lausanne (Switzerland), founded less than a year ago by Spaniards Eva María Córdoba, Roberto García, Miguel Ángel Pablo and Héctor Blanco, explained to EFE that all its members have a long history in the sector.
“People see Bornan as something new, I would try to find out who is behind this new name. The least experienced person in our programming office has been in sports technology for 16 years,” Córdoba, the company’s president, told EFE.
A large part of Bornan’s staff, including its technical director Roberto Garcia, were formerly part of the Spanish real-time sports results company MSL Group, which was bought in 2012 by France’s Atos, the current technology partner of the Olympic Games until Paris 2024.
Bornan was awarded the public tender for the accreditation service, athlete registration, results management, television graphics and results information for the 18th edition of the Mediterranean Games in Tarragona, which will be held from 22 June to 1 July 2018.
In the contest, they were chosen ahead of the Spanish subsidiary of Atos and AllOne Sports, which were rejected for not covering some parts of the contract specifications, and the Italian company Microplus Informatica, which included more improvements than the proposal of the transalpine company despite the fact that its financial offer was 60,000 euros more expensive (1,299,000 euros for Bornan to 1,239,000 euros for Microplus).
Among these technical improvements offered by Bornan are that the results information system used by athletes can be consulted from mobile phones, a system for commentators or a latest news box designed for the media to insert on their web pages.
“This type of service, which is used in the Olympic Games, is not seen as much in this type of games as in the Mediterranean Games,” Roberto García explained to EFE.
García explains that in order to cover all the needs of Tarragona 2018, they will employ their own staff, around 20 people, as well as accredited companies for specific tasks, such as the timing service of the Royal Spanish Athletics Federation (RFEA), for a total of 160 people.
The 2018 Mediterranean Games in the city of Tarragona will host 4,000 athletes from 26 different nationalities competing in 33 sporting disciplines, with 1,000 judges, 3,500 volunteers, 1,000 journalists and more than 150,000 spectators, according to the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE).
The company with a Spanish team and the headquarters in Switzerland also intends to leave “a legacy” in Tarragona, through agreements with the Sant Cugat High Performance Centre and several universities so that athletes from their centres can be trained in the use of the approved time and results management material, so that the city can organise other championships in the future.
“It didn’t make sense to prepare approved headquarters and then have no one know how to use them,” says Eva María Córdoba, president of a company that was registered as a company in the Swiss register last July, an aspect that has generated some controversy after the award due to the company’s youth.
According to its founders, the company was created after García ended his association with Atos, the company where he was commercial director in Switzerland until May 2017, and integrated Conersys, the sports technology company founded by Miguel Ángel Pablo and Héctor Blanco, which manages the results of sports tournaments such as the last Acapulco Open tennis tournament (Mexico).
“As it was a new company, the specifications asked for a financial guarantee as we had no guarantee from previous projects. We presented the business plan to Axa Winterthur and they gave us the financial guarantee,” says García.
The insurance has a cover of 2 million euros for three years, which exceeds the requirements of the Tarragona 2017 Foundation, organiser of the Mediterranean Games, and will allow the company to bid for new competitions.
However, the award has been appealed in the ordinary courts by the Italian company Microplus, which, according to Bornan’s representatives, has claimed that the Tarragona 2017 Foundation had made errors in the documentation requested from the winning company. Córdoba acknowledged that they are “within their rights” and confirmed that they will present allegations.
Bornan, whose name comes from ‘le bornan’, a wind from the Swiss Alps, “which is characterised by its speed and because it comes when you don’t expect it”, is based in Lausanne (Switzerland) in order to have contact with the international sports federations in the country and for the support offered by the Swiss canton of Vaud.
The company aims to “differentiate through technology” with “flexible” systems to save competition organisers money through cloud technologies, and already has several clients in addition to Tarragona 2018.
According to its creators, Bornan has signed two contracts with the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) to be its technology provider for the next three years, and has reached a similar agreement with the Spanish Paralympic Committee.
They are also closing deals with some Tennis Masters 1000 and several international federations, and have been selected for the final screening at the 2019 University Games in Naples (Italy), the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima (Peru) and the 2019 European Games in Minsk (Belarus). In the future, their goal is to offer their services at the Olympic Games.