KPMG and Team Sunweb are set to work closely together to lift the team’s performance to a higher level. As part of this cooperation, KPMG will help Team Sunweb to become a more data-driven organization with the aid of innovative technology.
Better use of technology should put Team Sunweb among the top players in the international cycling sport on a structural basis in the coming years, with all its programs (Men, Women & Development),” says Iwan Spekenbrink, CEO of Team Sunweb.
Spekenbrink: “Ultimately, the cooperation should make it possible for Team Sunweb to compete on a structural basis for the top prize in the major cycling races such as the Tour de France. This partnership will enable us to make the enormous amount of data we are already collecting scalable and to then create more effective predictive models. This immediately lifts our performance model to an even higher level.
In the medium term, however, the transition to a more data-driven working model also means we will have to make some explicit organizational changes. We look at cycling as the ultimate team sport, in which both riders and experts have to excel to make the team stronger. KPMG is the obvious partner to assist us in that process.”
The optimum balance between the performance of individual riders and performance of the team is at the heart of Team Sunweb’s approach. “We need data and technology to make a greater contribution to their performances. But this is not just a matter of technology,” says Rob Fijneman, KPMG’s Chair of the Board of Management.
Fijneman: “The human factor, and that means both individual riders and the team as a whole, is vital if we want to make tangible progress. Data, technology and the human factor need to be closely aligned to make progress that leaves people firmly in charge. That is people-driven progress. This change requires adjustments, of people, processes and the systems within the organization.
KPMG and Team Sunweb will work together to realize this change, that puts the human factor center stage. Much the same way that we support other companies in other sectors. This is a perfect match with Team Sunweb’s Keep Challenging philosophy. The team believes in collective optimization. Innovation always has to go hand in hand with optimum cooperation between riders, coaches and experts. The human factor is essential on this front. And that is exactly what makes KPMG and Team Sunweb a perfect match.”
An essential part of the transformation is the development of a new data platform that gives all the experts at Team Sunweb real-time access to the relevant available data about the team and the individual riders. Fijneman: “And that does not just include riders and the team management, but also trainers, movement scientists, nutritional specialists and medical staff. We include all the known data on the individual riders. Information on their physical condition, their training performances, their diet plans and their race and injury history.
Making every discipline in the team work together during a race and using all the insights during the race enables the team to deliver a better performance. For instance, data on the physical condition of the riders, the details of a particular stage and the weather conditions can be collated, analyzed and used in real time to improve decision-making during the race. The use of artificial intelligence and predictive analyses provides a picture of potential race scenarios, the team’s chances of finishing a race successfully and the impact of strategic interventions by the team management.”
In addition to the use of data during races, the performances delivered during larger and smaller races and the progress made by the riders in these are entered into the platform. Fijneman: “The generated analyses enables us to make an extremely detailed picture of the qualities of the individual riders, of their strengths and weaknesses and how the riders and their specific qualities develop over time. This enables us to identify talented riders and provide training regimes that are tailored down to the last detail to the needs of individual riders.
If we combine this data with the data from major races that are due to be held and the details of the stages in those races, then I believe we could make a contribution to a Tour de France victory for Team Sunweb in the near future.”
Please contact Andy Bellm for more information, +31 20 656 7039.
The Dutch version of this press release can be found here.