SFIA and SBRnet Create Strategic Partnership

Agreement will create new consumer Fan Influencer Index and bolster academic market with SFIA Data Sharing Agreement

SILVER SPRING, MD (June 1, 2021) – The Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) has partnered with SBRnet, the academic community’s leading provider of data for sports business and sports marketing students. Under the terms of the agreement, SFIA will  provide SBRnet’s Sports Market Analytics platform with sports and activity participation data for more than 88 key sports categories, including team sports, fitness, outdoor and individual sports and activities.

The two groups will also collaborate on creating The Fan Influencer Index, a new measurement which will track fan behavior and its effect on participation and product/brand sales in the post-Pandemic world.

“We’re excited to work with SBRnet and its new owners Mark Sullivan and Neil Schwartz,” said SFIA CEO Tom Cove. “They are two solid industry veterans who know the space and will be great partners for us.”

“SFIA’s comprehensive participation data is the gold standard and we are thrilled to be able to offer it to our clients in the academic world,” said SBRnet president Neil Schwartz. 

SBRnet is a one-stop source for all forms of business data related to the sports business including sales of active lifestyle gear, clothing and footwear, fan behavior and college and professional sports attendance. The SBRnet data platform is available at more than 225 colleges and public library systems nationwide, including 75% of the top 150 Business Schools including Stanford, Penn, Northwestern, U of Chicago, Columbia, NYU, University of Michigan, Emory, Ohio University and Cal Berkeley. Students at these and other top schools rely on data from SBRnet and Sports Market Analytics platform to help their students better understand what’s happening across every aspect of the sports business.

Bill Patterson, SFIA’s new Chief Business Officer, commented “we feel that our relationship with SBRnet will make data accessible to every college and university in the nation and will put the SFIA at the forefront to training and developing new talent for our industry.”

The data on the SBRnet platform includes its proprietary Sports Market Analytics Survey of Fan Behavior, which is conducted twice a year. The survey will form the basis of the newly created Fan Influencer Index which will offer new insights into fan behavior in the Post Pandemic world. “Fans are engaging with their teams in dramatically different ways since the Covid-19 virus hit and The Fan Influencer Index, (FII?) will provide new insights on that behavior as it relates to attendance, media consumption and sports betting,” Cove added.

The SFIA Fan Influencer Index powered by SBRnet will be available to all SFIA members as well as SBRnet subscribers.

Under the terms of this new agreement, SFIA and SBRnet will also collaborate in the academic marketplace, promoting SFIA memberships to top schools and professors and building programs to educate students on professional opportunities in the sports business.


ABOUT SBRnet: SBrnet was founded in 1998 to provide a one stop hub for all forms of data for the sports business including sales of active lifestyle gear, clothing and footwear, fan behavior and college and professional sports attendance

The business was purchased in December 2020 by Neil Schwartz and Mark Sullivan. Schwartz has more than two decades of marketing & consumer research experience in the sports, fitness and active lifestyle categories. Sullivan is a former editor and publisher in sports business and one of the founders of The Running Event, the largest B2B conference and trade show in the world. He sold The Running Event in 2018.

Related Content