The Tool: Hockey Management Platform
During the breakfast discussion, knowing André was working in technology, they asked if it was possible to digitize paper scoresheets. His answer was that everything is possible in technology but there is no viable project if there is no value generated. They were all convinced that it would highly benefit MHA Associations. That day, we did not know it was the start of HiSports endeavours.
The first year we did put together an economic model, a high-level architecture and started to develop a prototype for Kamloops Minor Hockey season 2016-2017. Our first and most important goal was to improve efficiency by saving time and paper manipulations. Where it was making sense; we wanted a Shared Economy Model. Resources time and effort were splitted in between Minor Hockey Associations and portion of revenues needed to be redistribute back to the game. We want the platform to be self-sustained and return value.
In 2016-2017, we intensified the development. That same year, discussions with BC Hockey started. In 2016, BC Hockey officially started to get involved in the project. They suggested we start a pilot for an entire district. In 2017-2018, we successfully did a full season with the District of OMAHA BC, digitally scorekeeping over 4,000 games. We had a very challenging start but at the end of the season we were pleased by the feedback but not entirely satisfied with where the product was. Consequently, we decided that the project needed to get to another level. In order to achieve it, we created HiSports Ventures Lte., went out to raise capital and put a large development team together and share part of none development work in between Minor Hockey Organisations and HiSports. With BC Hockey we decided that our project analysts had to be people working and or volunteering in Minor Hockey Associations always keeping in mind our Shared Economy Model where we saw fit.
We cannot talk about HiSports story without praising Sherry Wakelin, the OMAHA Registrar. When we first work together, she was very reluctant and as it was in her mind supplementary tasks. After few months of piloting the platform, she became one of the main requirements driven force behind the product until this day. Of all the successes of HiSports, that one is the most satisfying. Sherry is not well versed into technology. It was a good thing as it pushed our development team to be Hockey Operations driven. On the other hand, it has pushed complexity behind the scene.
Since summer of 2017, we have improved the product tremendously and the pilot expended to a large proportion of BC and part of Alberta. Our goal is to serve the entire country and beyond. We are not a typical product; we are a group of people that tries to add value by streamlining Hockey Operations processes. In 2018-2019 we will reach a little over 40,000 Minor Hockey games, and our goal is to partner with you to get to 250,000 by 2021. HiSports is more than a technology solution, it is a human story, a team effort and it is proudly built by Hockey People for Hockey People. Using the platform is a commitment to benefit the game and most importantly young hockey players.