SPORTYN, Pioneering Vertical Integration, Democratising Sporting Opportunity

Paul Bradbury
8 min readMar 19, 2021

March 19, 2021 — Doing for sport what LinkedIn does for business, how the SPORTYN app is harnessing the power of vertical integration in social media to level the playing field of sporting opportunity for 2 billion people.

She smiled. She was not alone.

All those thousands of hours of solitary training in her village in Peru to help realise her dream of winning Olympic Gold in the 100 metres were starting to get noticed. All over the world, people were watching her training videos, despite her never having left her native country.

How ironic, the mother smiled to herself, as she filmed her son showcasing his basketball moves in her native Vietnam, the fourth day in a row that her son had asked her to do so. In an era where gadgets alienate relationships between parents and children, here was a growing bond, and a healthy one.

Amazing, exclaimed the teenager from Belarus. His new footballing friend from Georgia just had his video liked and commented on by Croatian World Cup star Ivan Rakitic. Imagine such a star watching our videos!

Taking a shower after scoring the winning goal in the Champions League qualifier, he reflected on how his huge success could so easily have come to nothing, had not that chance encounter in his village in Mali not resulted in him being spotted. How many fantastic talents are out there, waiting to be discovered? If only there was a simple way to give back.

Four seemingly random stories from all corners of the planet, but all connected in two important ways.

The first is through sport, a passion for them all, from world-famous professionals to aspiring amateurs. The power of sport connects them, and they are not alone. There are over 2 billion people engaged in sport all over the globe, of whom only 500 million are professionals, and just 5% of those become stars in their respective sports. For many, it will be a case of what might have been, as they are unable to reach the limelight to showcase their considerable talents. Without a chance encounter such as the one in Mali above, how would agents and talent spotters find them?

There is now a way, with the launch of a new app that uses the power of vertical integration of social media, AI technology and the finer aspects of established global social media such as Facebook, Instagram and Tik Tok, to level the playing field of sporting opportunity as never before.

The second thing which connects the four stories above is SPORTYN.

As a result of the tremendous early interest in the SPORTYN application, it has already been featured as App of the Day in the App Store in 5 countries — the UK, Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. Videos have already been uploaded from more than 80 countries.

SPORTYN has been developed based on a natural evolution of social media, building on the success and affirmed benefits of earlier platforms including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Tik Tok.

With the continued development and process of change, users are always demanding more from social media. As a result, SPORTYN provides these answers in a specialised vertically integrated form for sports and athletes seeking a community of like-minded individuals with a specific purpose to promote themselves and their sport to a global audience.

Since its launch in October, 2020, SPORTYN has attracted users from some 85 countries (United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Canada, Brazil are Turkey are the top ten.) More than 30% of users have uploaded video content of aspects of their engagement in sport, and the engagement is quite incredible.

Facebook is a multi-billion dollar company in business for over a decade, and with an average session duration of 4.82 minutes. Just a few months old and on a fraction of the budget, Sportyn’s average visit time is 30% longer, a staggering 6.43 minutes, and still growing. Part of the reason is that SPORTYN is at the cutting edge of the next generation of social media, harnessing the power of niche and vertical integration.

While your Facebook feed is filled with photos of your friends’ cats, children, ‘meaningful’ life quotes and memes, and your own posts are only seen by 5% of your followers, SPORTYN provides only engaging content for the niche and passion of the user.

Passionate about archery and training 7 days a week? What could you learn and how could you compare your skills with other budding archers from around the globe? Simple video uploads no more than 60 seconds each, showcasing the individual talents of amateur (and professional) athletes all over the world quickly forms a niche community where the content is 100% relevant to the user. Add the social media tools of shareability, virality and comments, and a new world opens up for that athlete in her village in Peru in the first story, above.

The power of vertical integration of social media is enhanced with the powerful ‘filter’ feature built into the SPORTYN app, which allows users to quickly search for their favorite and targeted athlete / athletes based on many different categories including country, sport, age and many more. No other SOCIAL MEDIA application offers this advanced and valuable built in feature.

And what a simple and effective way for that famous Mali footballer with the Champions League winner to give back. Checking out some young Malian footballer displaying their talents. A comment, or a ‘like’ from the Mali football legend who made it in Europe would do wonders for confidence and encouragement.

As parents worry what their kids are watching in their rooms behind closed doors, SPORTYN takes a different approach. It is based on sport, healthy activity, and encouraging its users to be the very best they can. Parents wanting to encourage their kids to achieve their sporting dream can now participate through the same technology that is alienating so many parents and children with less healthy purposes.

Croatian World Cup finalist, Ivan Rakitić, is the Brand Ambassador of SPORTYN, one of many top professional athletes who recognise the power of SPORTYN, as well as its ability to afford more opportunity for talented young athletes who are starting to get noticed.

“No matter what part of the world you live in and in what conditions you train in, SPORTYN helps you show off your talent to a global sporting audience and those who, recognising your potential, can change your life literally overnight,” he said.

Rakitić is one of many stars who will take in what promises to be perhaps the most viral aspect of SPORTYN’s appeal. SPORTYN will soon launch sporting challenges, whereby a global star will demonstrate a particular skill and invite others to post a similar video to pit their skills against the stars. The star player will comment, like, and engage with the audience taking part, a huge motivating factor for youngsters such as the teenager from Belarus, above. Web searches for Rakitic now return results which include SPORTYN videos.

A unique opportunity to pit one’s skills against both peers and a global superstar simultaneously. Those who successfully complete challenges will be rewarded with unique awards, including signed jerseys, digital meet and greets, and other unique and memorable experiences

SPORTYN will use both AI and its own customised algorithms to analyse and rank athlete profiles, videos and other criteria by both country and at a global level. Every 12 year-old basketball player will want to be a Top 10 SPORTYN athlete in their city or country to get recognised and be able to say they are among the best.

With more than 90 sports already featured on the app and users in 85 countries, SPORTYN is literally tearing down the sporting barriers on every level. Fringe sports which did not have a global audience are now hosted on a platform that is both proactive and educational. Fringe sports athletes are slowly getting connected through vertical integration of social media in their niche. In what can a very lonely activity, training and challenging oneself has additional motivations, as well as an audience to provide feedback and encouragement.

One of the first athletes to upload videos to Sportyn was Nicolas Radičić, a 16-year-old Croat, who had moved from Zagreb to Texas. An outstanding talent at both soccer and American football, Radicic has made excellent progress, helped in part by SPORTYN, and he is the number one kicker for his age group for American football in the USA.

SPORTYN goes much further than just providing a platform, however. One key aim is to build a database of athletes around the world. Using AI to analyse every video, including speed and number of touches, SPORTYN can rank athletes using the platform based on ability for various criteria. Excellent news for talent spotters, as well as those athletes in remote places with no other option to promote their skills.

The SPORTYN community is already bringing positive examples for users, developing role models, mentors and inspiring stories to motivate younger generations to aspire and achieve more.

SPORTYN is the brainchild of former professional footballer, Ivan Ilečić, whose 16-year-old son plays for Dinamo Zagreb. Already well-versed in developing sporting apps, including Once, Ilečić explained his vision.

“We had a clear vision to offer athletes a unique and powerful virtual community and a tool for their easier and direct promotion globally. What LinkedIn is for business people, SPORTYN is for athletes. It’s a platform where you simply have to be present to expand your networking, be noticed or contacted by the right people who can change your life in seconds. Parents and athletes often film and archive videos from their sports competitions in the hope that at some point they will be able to send them to specific agents, scouts, or anyone who could help them show off their talent. We believe that currently billions of sports videos are left unused on computers. Some of them were published on the most famous social networks but as these platforms do not allow reaching the target audience, it is almost impossible to find them.

“We solved that problem with the SPORTYN app and, additionally, with the launch of the unique SPORTYN ID, we solved another important problem in promotion of athletes. Namely, we created a central place for all sports data and CVs of athletes that are currently dispersed on thousands of different websites, which is why they were unusable and did not bring any benefit to athletes or those to whom such content is important”, said Ilečić, the founder and CEO of Sportyn Inc.

The Olympic Games is every athlete’s dream, a chance to compete with the very best every year. SPORTYN provides athletes to present themselves globally every day and as an application has the ability to generate tremendous awareness for the most popular of sports football to new and upcoming sports like snowboarding.

Finally, an application that levels the playing field for all, promotes healthy activity, gives hope and inspiration to potentially billions, and which will also make finding the next Ronaldo that bit easier.

To learn more about SPORTYN, visit the official website.



Paul Bradbury

Brit based in Croatia, owner of Total Croatia News (, the largest English-language news portal for Croatia.